Manziel Struggles, Flips Middle Finger in Loss to Redskins

by Brian McNally

LANDOVER, Md. — The Redskins had some fun at the expense of brash Cleveland Browns rookie quarterback Johnny Manziel on Monday night.

Linebacker Brian Orakpo was on Manziel from the start of the preseason game at FedEx Field, making his notorious “money” gesture after his team sacked the 2012 Heisman Trophy winner.

Manziel, in a fight for the starting quarterback position with Brian Hoyer, didn’t have a great night in a 24-23 loss. He completed 7 of 16 passes for 65 yards and a touchdown, but was sacked three times. His quarterback rating was 76.3.

In the third quarter, Manziel lost his cool and was caught on camera giving the middle finger to Washington’s sideline as he walked away after a play.

“I had words exchanged with me throughout the entirety of the game – every game, week after week,” Manziel said. “I should have been smarter. It was a Monday Night Football game and the cameras were probably solidly on me.”

Teammates came to Manziel’s defense. And Redskins players afterward admitted that they tried to rankle the rookie quarterback. Orakpo, who went to Texas and enjoyed tweaking the Texas A&M product, told ESPN that he found the middle finger from Manziel “hilarious”.

Manziel’s coach was not so amused.

“That doesn’t sit well,” Browns coach Mike Pettine said. “I was informed right after the game and I’m disappointed. We talk about being poised, being focused. You have to be able to maintain your poise. It’s a big part of all football players, especially the quarterback.”

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