One year after the historic Deshaun Watson trade that cost Baker Mayfield his starting quarterback position with the Cleveland Browns, Mayfield gets another chance in Tampa Bay.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are signing Mayfield to a one-year deal worth up to $8.5 million with the express purpose of competing with Kyle Trask for the QB1 position to succeed Tom Brady.
Former No. 1 overall pick Baker Mayfield reached agreement today on a one-year deal worth up to $8.5 million with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, per sources. Mayfield is now in line to be Tom Brady’s successor. pic.twitter.com/2ZldEPxHY8
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 15, 2023
Mayfield’s 2022 NFL season was a peculiar one.
Following the Watson trade, he was eventually traded to the Carolina Panthers and then traded again to the Los Angeles Rams.
He showed flashes of the Baker Mayfield that led the Browns to the 2020 playoffs, but he was inconsistent at times also.
Can Baker Win QB1 Job?
That is the $64,000 (or $8.5 million) question.
Baker was very good in 2020 with the Browns, but a 2021 shoulder injury suffered early in the season hampered him.
He performs best with his back against the wall so the opportunity to compete for the QB1 job will not faze him and could make him perform at a higher level.
A solid running game is key for Mayfield.
His best successes were when Nick Chubb was in the backfield for him in Cleveland.
With the Bucs releasing Leonard Fournette, Rachaad White will have to step up.
This Is Baker’s Fourth Team In 12 Months
If nothing else, this 2023 offseason and the deal with the Bucs will make for a calmer offseason for Mayfield.
This is his fourth team in a calendar year.
He returns to the NFC South where he will face his former team, the Panthers, as well as a retooled New Orleans Saints roster led by quarterback Derek Carr.
Also on the Bucs’ 2023 schedule is an away game at San Francisco.
Prior to Brock Purdy’s elbow surgery last week, there was reporting that Mayfield would be signed by the 49ers.
The Bucs also have tough road games against the Buffalo Bills and the Green Bay Packers in 2023.
Baker Mayfield tends to be a divisive person among NFL fans.
Whether it is the swagger, the Heisman Trophy, or the fact that he was the No. 1 overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, he has both diehard fans and dissenters.
Regardless, he will make Buccaneers training camp, the first without Tom Brady, very interesting this summer.
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