Reason Baker Mayfield stays No. 1 – He has earned it
I know myself, I have changed my mind 100 different times, but the last reason Baker Mayfield will be back is that he has earned it. No matter how bad he was at times in 2021, the guy got the Cleveland Browns to the playoffs and won a game in Pittsburgh when it mattered most.
It’s easy for us Browns fans to be lulled to sleep by average quarterback play after years of misery, but I do think when healthy, Mayfield can be good enough to get this team to a Super Bowl. He’s never going to be a guy who can throw the ball 50 times like Ben Roethlisberger or Patrick Mahomes and win you a game, but he can be an elite game manager which works in this offense.
Remember, just one season ago Mayfield won 11 regular-season games, threw for over 3,500 yards with 26 touchdowns and only 8 interceptions. That included many tight games that came down to the wire and he was able to close.
Now, one thing Mayfield needs to do is figure out how to put a game-winning drive together. But I will give credit where due, and he did a fantastic job of closing games with the lead in 2020. Chubb may have been carrying the load, but if we are going to bash him, we also need to give credit when due.
I think even Mayfield would admit that 2021 was a huge failure for the team and himself, so not only does he deserve a fresh start in 2022, look for him to have success and be the long-term answer in Cleveland.