It appears the Cleveland Browns are ready to roll with Baker Mayfield in 2022 after a good exit meeting with the head coach, Kevin Stefanski.
The Cleveland Browns have one last game in the 2021 season, but it was all but over last weekend when the Cincinnati Bengals clinched the AFC North and eliminated the Browns from the playoffs.
It has been a rollercoaster for much of the season that started with an injury to Baker Mayfield in week two, the departure of Odell Beckham after the trade deadline, and back-to-back weeks where multiple starters missed games because of COVID19.
Quarterback drama has left Northeast Ohio for the last few seasons, but it has returned in dramatic fashion already and the offseason hasn’t even begun. Will Mayfield be traded? Will the Browns draft a young quarterback? Will the Browns go all in and try to land a guy like Aaron Rodger or Russell Wilson?
All questions that no one really knows the answers to.
Baker Mayfield set to return as starter in 2022
Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero reported this morning that after a standard exit meeting between Kevin Stefanski and Mayfield, all signs point towards Mayfield being the Cleveland Browns quarterback in 2022.
At the end of the Steelers game, Mayfield was critical of the blocking scheme and play calling which isn’t typically his style. That led me to believe there may be some concerns with he and Stefanski, but if they did work it out, it’s likely best for everyone.
With Mayfield’s fifth-year options being fully guaranteed at over $18.8 million, and recovering from shoulder surgery, Andrew Berry would have had to give up a lot for the Browns to start fresh next season.
The plan now should be, see a healthy Mayfield play in 2022 and figure out the options from there. Berry could use the franchise tag or give him a long-term extension in the middle of next season.
If things go south again, it’s much easier for the Browns to let him walk after 2022.