There’s a belief that the Carolina Panthers and Seattle Seahawks are interested in Baker Mayfield — if he is released. However, that’s not happening according to sources.
As we approach the month of June, the Cleveland Browns still have Baker Mayfield on their roster. And even when training camp approaches and teams begin to prepare for the season, that will most likely remain the case.
Yes, there are teams that could use Mayfield as a potential starter — or at least in a competition for a starting job — but that will only happen if those clubs decide to eat a huge chunk of his $18.8 million contract in 2022.
There has been a belief that Cleveland was simply holding on for the best offer and in the end, would release Mayfield but according to Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com, that’s not happening. She states that the Browns know they won’t get much relief by simply cutting Mayfield, so it’s best to be patient and see if a team becomes desperate.
"“The Browns would be better off hanging onto Mayfield and seeing if a team is willing to take a sizable chunk of that salary off their hands in the event of a QB injury before the trade deadline, or the realization that their starter isn’t cutting it.”"
It’s a tough situation for sure. Hanging onto Mayfield holds up a roster spot but then again, the team could recover some money via fines should he continue to not show up.
Cabot also brings up a great point that they will get some savings when he is signed by another team since the contract he gets from them would take away a portion of the guaranteed money Cleveland owes him. The problem is, teams know this — as does Mayfield and his representatives — so they would likely take the veteran minimum and that would reduce what the Browns pay by just over $1 million.
So the question comes down to this — does Cleveland pay nearly $18 million to let Mayfield play elsewhere with no chance of getting any relief or compensation, or do they risk paying $19 million with a chance someone could finally budge.
There’s clearly an argument to cut ties and move on, but it’s also easy to see what the front office is thinking.