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Johnny Manziel placed in concussion protocol; Austin Davis preparing to start

Duke Johnson Jr. was placed in the league's concussion protocol Wednesday afternoon, setting the stage for Austin Davis to likely make his second start of the season Sunday against the Steelers.

Manziel, who took a couple of hard hits in the Browns' loss last week at Kansas City, complained of concussion-like symptoms when he arrived at the Browns facility in Berea on Wednesday and underwent tests. He did not practice, as Davis led the first-team offense during the early portion that was open to reporters.

"I'm excited if the opportunity presents itself to play again," Davis said after Wednesday's practice, "and get a chance to go out and try to put the ball in the end zone."

Wide receiver Terrelle Pryor took some snaps at quarterback behind Davis during today's practice. The team could also add a quarterback to the roster in the coming days.

Davis has appeared in two games, starting one since he signed with the Browns in September. He's 32-of-48 for 307 yards with a touchdown and an interception. The Browns lost, 37-3, in his start earlier this month against the Bengals.

"I think anytime you go out and get a chance to start and the game goes the way that one did, it just leaves a bad taste in your mouth," Davis said. "Obviously that game didn't go the way we wanted it to, but just another chance to play, another chance to compete and go get after it again.

"Last game of the season and I know the guys are excited and ready to play and so am I."

Davis is poised to lead a Browns offense that has found increased success on the ground in recent weeks but is struggling to find the end zone. Cleveland has scored one or no touchdowns in three of its last four games despite averaging 156 rushing yards.

The Browns will be squaring off against a Pittsburgh team that is vulnerable against the pass -- Manziel threw for a career-best 372 yards against the Steelers in November -- but is playing for its playoff lives. The Steelers need to win and have the New York Jets lose to the Buffalo Bills in order to advance to the postseason with a 10-6 record.

The game's implications only add to the allure, Davis said.

"They have a lot to play for so we know they're going to come in and play hard and the thing is that, what I like to say, is we have a lot to play for, too, because it's another game," Davis said. "It's another Sunday. If we could knock them out and keep them from going to the playoffs, that'd be good."

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