Kevin Hogan will make his first career NFL start Sunday when the Browns face the Texans, Cleveland head coach Hue Jackson announced Wednesday.
Hogan takes over for rookie DeShone Kizer, who started the team's first five games. Kizer will serve as the backup to Hogan.
“I’ve made the decision to start Kevin this week," Jackson said in a statement. "We’ve liked what Kevin has been able to do within our offense when he’s been in there and he will start on Sunday because that’s what we feel is best for our team at this point in time. This does not change the way we feel about DeShone going forward. He has worked extremely hard and still very much has a bright future. Right now, it’s better for him and his development to back up Kevin.”
Hogan replaced Kizer in the second half of Sunday's loss to the Jets. He led Cleveland on two scoring drives, including his first of the game to give the Browns their first lead of the season. He threw two touchdown passes and an interception while completing 16-of-19 passes for 194 yards. Hogan also ran for 30 yards on four attempts.
“I am very confident. I am a very confident person. If you do your job in preparation and leading up to the game, then you do not let things surprise you," Hogan said Sunday. "I am big with visualization. I play the game before the game starts. That is something that I have been doing since back in college. Last year, I got to play a little bit, but I did not really understand the system. I was still kind of learning. Then having gone through the offseason and camp, I really feel like I am learning the system the way that coach wants it to be run."
Hogan, a former fifth-round pick by the Kansas City Chiefs out of Stanford, was signed by Cleveland shortly before the start of the 2016 season. He began with the Browns on the practice squad before joining the active roster following a slew of injuries. He didn't start a game but saw significant action midway through the season against the Bengals, throwing for 100 yards and two interceptions and rushing for 104 in a loss.
Hogan was named Cleveland's backup heading into Week 1 and relieved Kizer one week later when the rookie suffered a migraine. He completed 5-of-11 passes for 118 yards with a touchdown and an interception.