Cleveland Browns draft profile: Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield

NORMAN, OK - NOVEMBER 25: Quarterback Baker Mayfield (Photo by Brett Deering/Getty Images)
NORMAN, OK - NOVEMBER 25: Quarterback Baker Mayfield (Photo by Brett Deering/Getty Images) /

The Cleveland Browns need a quarterback, and they will have plenty to choose from come the 2018 NFL Draft. Perhaps the most interesting and polarizing of the options in this class is Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield.

Quarterback is the most important position in sports; don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. Regardless of how good a team’s defense is, or how good the team around the quarterback is, the quarterback is the one that makes it all work.

Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield is electric, and could be what the Browns need at the quarterback position. Although shorter than what many NFL people would normally like, Mayfield makes up for that in electrifying plays, pinpoint accuracy and great leadership skills.

As one of the core four quarterbacks in this class, Mayfield seems to have sky-high expectations for the next level. Some love him, some hate him, but the reality is that he could be a first-round pick by the Browns. Here’s what fans can expect from Mayfield.

Deadly Accuracy and Sneaky Arm Strength

One of Mayfield’s greatest attributes on the field is his ability to thread the various needles on a football field. He carved up defenses throughout the NCAA, especially in his last year with the Sooners, where he completed 70.5 percent of his passes for 4,627 yards, 43 touchdowns and just six interceptions.

Related: Mel Kiper on shaky ground with latest mock draft

Now, despite what one Mel Kiper Jr. may tell you, completion percentage actually does matter in the NFL. Inaccuracy seems to be the No. 1 cause of busting quarterbacks at the professional level. But against Ohio State, one of the most feared defenses in the NCAA, Mayfield shined.

Completing 27-of-35 passes (77.1 percent) for three touchdowns and no interceptions, Mayfield looked like a stud in the Horseshoe against the Buckeyes. Keep in mind, Ohio State’s defense included cornerback Denzel Ward, as well as Sam Hubbard and Jerome Baker on the front seven.

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If Mayfield can transfer his completion rate to the NFL and the Browns, he would immediately become the most accurate passer in Browns history (throwing at least 90 passes).

Mayfield’s accuracy shines through while he’s on the run. He can deliver a dart to anywhere on the field, even with a pass rush right in his face. Just as importantly, Mayfield’s arm is a lot stronger than many seem to think it is. At only 6-foot-1, his arm strength for his height is astounding.

Against Oklahoma State, Mayfield showed off his arm to the tune of 598 yards, five touchdowns, and two interceptions. Mayfield also turned some heads at the NFL Scouting Combine during throwing drills, showcasing his strength and accuracy.

Leadership, and Why It Matters

Browns head coach Hue Jackson became forever etched in Browns Meme Lore on March 27 when he gave an hour-long interview with multiple Browns reporters. What he said about Baker Mayfield may be extraordinarily goofy, but it also speaks some volumes about Mayfield’s leadership skills.

Now, whether or not Mayfield was seriously going around Oklahoma’s facilities shouting “hee hee!” remains to be seen. But if he could really get all the other players and staff members to join in on something like that, it says a lot about his skills as a leader on and off the field.

Mayfield’s players trust him, and are willing to follow him wherever he goes. Mayfield’s goal is to take them to the promised land, and they are all-in on him. The Cleveland Browns need someone like that.

Mayfield is a fiery leader with an undying competitive spirit, even though some of his “antics” can rub scouts the wrong way. There is some interesting, different, and fun “X Factor” about Mayfield that cannot be denied.

Leadership is a powerful thing on the football field, especially coming from a quarterback. Mayfield has that “trust me” attitude with his teammates, which is easy to see. Does he get out of hand sometimes? Maybe, yes. But he can talk, and back it up.


Baker Mayfield will almost certainly not be the Browns’ first overall pick; that honor likely goes to USC’s Sam Darnold. But is Mayfield the most interesting quarterback in this entire class? Absolutely yes.

Mayfield is pinpoint accurate, has the skills to drive the ball, and has faced great defenses and adversity with poise. If he were only a couple of inches taller, he would likely be the consensus No. 1 pick in this draft class.

Next: Browns draft profile: Notre Dame's Quenton Nelson

Mayfield has basically everything you want in a quarterback, both physically and mentally. He may still need some time to sit and learn, but make no mistake, he is ready. Should the Browns take him, they are getting a leader, a determined player and a great quarterback prospect.