The National Football League has reportedly fined Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel for an obscene gesture.
According to ESPN NFL analyst Adam Schefter, the rookie was fined $12,000 for raising his middle finger to the Washington Redskins during Cleveland's Monday night 24-23 preseason loss.
"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, and I need to be smarter about that."
Manziel has appeared in two preseason games for the Browns, completing 14 of 27 combined pass atempts for one touchdown.
"Since my name has grown bigger and people have known who I am, it just continues to go as the games continue to go on," he said following Cleveland's 24-23 loss to the Redskins. "I don't know if there is a single level of severity each game, but I know it's there and it's present every game. I just need to let it slide off my back and go to the next play.
"I feel like I did a good job of holding my composure throughout the night and you have a lapse of judgment and slip up."
The Browns named Brian Hoyer their starting quarterback to open the season earlier this week.
Browns coach Mike Pettine said he was "extremely disappointed" with Manziel's behaviour after the loss. He added that Manziel's on-field conduct was a factor in naming Hoyer as the Opening Day starter.
"We talk about 'Play like a Brown.' We want our guys to act like a Brown," Pettine said. "We want to be a first-class organization. We have hundreds, thousands of kids come to our training camp practices, and look up to our players. That type of behaviour is unacceptable. It's something that's part of football that you have to maintain your poise and your composure, especially at that position, and he should know better than anyone that all eyes are on him."