Baker Mayfield contract extension in Seattle on the horizon?

The Cleveland Browns may have finally found a trade partner that will take Baker Mayfield off their hands as the Seattle Seahawks have shown interest. 

I said I would never write another article on Baker Mayfield, but I have had a change of heart due to some news that broke on Wednesday evening. Forgive me for not keeping my word on that subject. I feel like a pro wrestler who announces retirement.

The Cleveland Browns very well could have discovered a trade partner in order to finally rid themselves of Mayfield. According to Josina Anderson of CBS Sports, the Seattle Seahawks have a “high level of interest” in acquiring Mayfield.

A new kicker to this story is the fact that the Seahawks are internally discussing an extension for Mayfield.

This seems like there is a lot of traction here and it is very telling that Seattle is willing to potentially extend Mayfield, who is coming off an injury-plagued, drama-filled season. The Carolina Panthers have also expressed interest in possibly making a trade for the four-year veteran. The hang-up is the money involved.

Albert Breer of the Monday Morning Quarterback said on The Rich Eisen Show that the Browns would be willing to eat half of the $18.86 that remains on his fifth-year, fully-guaranteed option. He also said that the Panthers only want to take on $4 or $5 million, so that will likely factor them out of the equation. They are also paying Sam Darnold all of his $18.85 million fifth-year option, also fully guaranteed, and they drafted Matt Coral in the third round of the NFL Draft.

This actually favors Mayfield in the fact that he would be better off going to Seattle than Carolina, despite going to the tougher division. He would square off with Matthew Stafford, Kyler Murray, and (likely) Trey Lance twice a year, but would also have wide receivers DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett as well as tight end Noah Fant as weapons to throw to.

The Seahawks are in somewhat of a rebuild mode after trading superstar quarterback Russell Wilson to the Denver Broncos earlier this offseason. In the trade, Seattle acquired Fant and quarterback Drew Lock, along with draft picks. Now that minicamps have ended, it’s possible the Seahawks saw what they had in Lock and decided Baker was a better option to roll with.

Mayfield is also in a rebuild mode. We all know what he did – and didn’t – do while he was a member of the Browns. He helped lead the team to the playoffs for the first time in 18 years and also a playoff victory for the first time in 26 years. He was incredibly tough and battled through a ton of injuries, but in the end, he just wasn’t what Cleveland had in mind in terms of a player who could lead them to the promised land.

Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll could be a great pairing for Mayfield as he attempts to restart his career. Carroll loves relying on his running attack, so by doing so, Mayfield wouldn’t have to always make hero throws. On the flip side, if Seattle gets down early, and the run game is abandoned, Mayfield will have a chance to shine and show the world he is a good NFL quarterback and not a guy who is entirely too inconsistent.

This story, which we all knew was going to eventually end, especially when the Browns traded for Deshaun Watson, looks like it could finally be coming to an end. I would say within the next week or two, this trade goes down and both the Browns and Mayfield can finally put this saga to rest.