The Browns reportedly believe making a quarterback change and going with Johnny Manziel would undermine the work they have already put into this season.
However, Cole adds that Cleveland is not married to Hoyer long-term, due to his mediocre play throughout the year, and instead want to see if Hoyer can lead them to the playoffs and possibly take them the rest of the way.
The Browns are obviously trying to determine if they should extend him a long-term contract that would come with a large increase in pay or go with the guy they used a first-round pick on earlier in the year.
Jason La Canfora previously reported that the Browns haven’t extended Hoyer a contract offer since the spring. League sources told La Canfora that Hoyer would likely target a similar contract to the one signed by Bengals QB Andy Dalton several months ago.
Dalton received a seven-year, $97.09 million contract that included $17 million guaranteed, but the agreement essentially breaks down to a series of one-year deals. The benefit of this contract is that it offers the team a great deal of flexibility while also paying the quarterback a decent rate, as long as he’s performing.
Hoyer, 29, is in the final year of his two-year, $1.965 million contract that includes $250,000 guaranteed. He’ll make a base salary of $1 million for the 2014 season.
He’s in a great position to secure a large pay raise on the open market next year given that there aren’t many next quarterbacks in next year’s free agent class.
Over the course of eight games, Hoyer has thrown for 2,872 yards while completing 56 percent of his passes to go along with 11 touchdowns and eight interceptions. Pro Football Focus has him rated as the No. 30 quarterback in the league this season.