The Cleveland Browns may have upgraded at quarterback, but Baker Mayfield still has a chance to take the Panthers to the 2022 NFL playoffs.
What did the Browns get in return? Well, they paid over $10 million of his salary in 2022 and they got a fifth-round 2024 pick. But that pick could turn into a fourth-round if Mayfield plays at least 70 percent of the 2022 snaps.
What’s the moral of this story? Andrew Berry must be kicking himself for not getting this deal done on draft night. It sounds like the picks would have each been a round earlier, and the Browns would have been responsible for less of the salary had they not waited so long.
Hey, that train has left the station and we move on. And while the Browns still don’t know who their starter will be, Mayfield has a chance to take the Panthers to the playoffs in 2022 for these three reasons.
3 Reasons Baker Mayfield can take Carolina to the playoffs
No. 3 – Health and the chip
I’m the first to admit that Mayfield may have been substantially better in 2022 with a healed shoulder. But I’ll also go to my grave fighting that Deshaun Watson is a far superior quarterback and the trade made this team better even giving up the picks.
But there’s no doubt that the Panthers are getting a heavily motivated Mayfield who has always played with a chip on his should. If he can find a way to use that for good and not lead it to him forcing, you really could see him have a tremendous year.
I argue the Cleveland Browns system is as quarterback friendly as any in the NFL, so remember the passing style that Ben McAdoo (Panthers Offensive Coordinator) wants to utilize is as complicated as any system in the league.