Browns head coach Freddie Kitchens likes Baker Mayfield‘s ability to escape the pocket and make plays with his leg. But Kitchens won’t take credit for it.
Kitchens said that’s an ability a quarterback either has or doesn’t have, and Mayfield has it.
“I do not really think you can coach anybody on escaping, and if they tell you that they can, then they are lying to you,” Kitchens said. “I think you just got to have to have a feel for the pocket and when it is collapsing or whatever you got to get out of there or sit there and take a sack, and I do not like sacks.”
Kitchens said part of his job is to rein in Mayfield to make sure he doesn’t expose himself to unnecessary hits.
“I think that is part of it,” Kitchens said. “When you have a skill set like Baker has, that is what you have to determine, is when to escape and when to shuffle and move. That is why we are practicing this to get those feel for things, feel for the pocket. I know he is safer inside the pocket. With somebody with that kind of skill, you do not ever want to diminish the fact that he can get outside the pocket because that is where his big plays are created a lot of times. It is just something we are working through and he is working through, and he is continuing to get better at it.”
Kitchens was pleased with Mayfield’s performance in the first preseason game, as Kitchens’ offense continued to look like the right fit for Mayfield’s “uncoachable” skill set.