What are the “internal things” that Baker Mayfield referenced?

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Often candid to a fault, Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield opened up a fault line in Cleveland with his comment to NFL Network that there have been “a lot of internal things” along with outside noise.

So what are the “internal things”? Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer took a stab at listing them.

First, Cabot reports that there’s been a “disconnect all season” between Mayfield and coach Kevin Stefanski in terms of playcalling. On Sunday, Mayfield complained that the Browns became “too conservative” after building a big lead. He’s undoubtedly not referring to himself when he says it.

Second, criticism of Mayfield on the team’s in-house radio show, Cleveland Browns Daily, “hasn’t always played well” with Mayfield. That’s one of the very real challenges of team-produced media. If the hosts and analysts go too easy on the players, coaches, etc., they look like shills. If they go after key members of the organization more aggressively, they can piss off those who view them as coworkers — because they are.

Third, the OBJ fiasco from early November has created problems. Per Cabot, the fact that many players supported Odell Beckham Jr. after his father posted a video showing all the times OBJ didn’t get the ball when open “was hard on Mayfield, and the ordeal took its toll.”

Fourth, there’s been a “major disconnect” between player and team as to “messaging” about his injuries. The coaches downplay them, Mayfield talks about them.

Fifth, some defensive players “have been frustrated” with Mayfield’s points production.

And we’ll add a sixth one of our own. Mayfield’s unresolved contract situation lingers in the background of all of these points of contention, likely magnifying them. At the core resides the question of whether the Browns value Mayfield in the way he believes he should be valued. If not, they’ll need to find a way to hold it all together for one more season, before he can become a free agent.

Sunday’s win becomes a Band-Aid (or maybe a temporary tourniquet), but the reality is that the Browns will be under a significant microscope over the next three weekends, with an NFL Network game at the Raiders on Saturday, a Christmas Day visit to Lambeau Field, and a Monday night trip to Pittsburgh for Ben Roethlisberger‘s final home game. If they sputter, they’ll hear it more loudly than they do when their games are tucked within the haze of the 1:00 p.m. ET kickoffs on a Sunday afternoon.

And everyone will now be looking for any signs of acrimony or friction or tension between Mayfield and, well, pretty much anyone.

25 responses to “What are the “internal things” that Baker Mayfield referenced?

  1. The Browns are in a tough spot. Mayfield is obviously talented, but they surely doubt if he has hit his ceiling already. But if you let him go– who do you get? It’s a QB league, and Mayfield at least keeps you in the hunt. Very similar to the Ravens and Lamar Jackson– do you stick with a QB who is talented but probably isn’t going to take you anywhere in the long run?

  2. Dumb.Browns fans have been waiting for a decent team for years, finally have one, and the local media hounds the team. Mayfield needs to do a BB and stop answering questions.

  3. Well it is the playcalling, Mayfield injuries [he should have been benched to help heal], the need to get the ball to Odell crap, for starters…

  4. Better stick with Baker. The hard truth is that no big name Free Agent Quarterback will go to the Browns (tough weather environment at the end of the season, tough defensive division, etc). There are no Quarterbacks coming up in the draft that would be half as good as Baker Mayfield. Browns organization had better fix this before Mayfield decides he doesn’t want to return.

  5. What Baker Mayfield said should serve as a lesson to PFT readers. Be careful when saying things about your job. A comment that was intended in a trivial way can end up coming back to bite you. At a real job, sometimes bite you really hard.

  6. Mayfield is not big enough to withstand the hits and now apparently mentally weak as well.He still seems immature but I don’t think he’ll ever grow out of his thin skinned sense of entitlement.He just isn’t as good as he thinks he is.

  7. The Browns are fine. Mayfield has been dealing with a lot of injuries, but to his credit, he doesn’t use them as excuses…..but we can.

    I don’t see any QB available that would be better for the Browns than Baker. The Browns are one game out of the wild card…..in a very tight division.

  8. This falls on Stefanski. He is the HC and play caller. Suffice to say, play calling has been terrible, especially in the 4th qtr. Also, he needs to reign in the team and get them all on the same page.

  9. If the defense has something to say, put a DB in at QB and give him 3 reads. See what he does.

    This all nonsense

  10. The Brown’s biggest problem is pandering to the media in the offseason. This prima Donna winner of the offseason creates nothing but grief when they get on the field. Keep a low profile. Let your record do the talking. It’s a good team.

  11. Mayfield is right. They would have lost to the Ravens with the coach’s call. They were lucky that Harbaugh helped them.
    Mayfield may not be Aaron Rodgers but who is?
    Problem wht kind of contract?

  12. All the Cleveland media is good for is stirring the pot and throwing shade. Always trying to make something more than it is.

  13. If he plays to his potential, Mayfield may at best be a Kirk Cousins. And I expect the Browns to treat him as such. They won’t overcommit to an extension instead playing it year by year with the franchise tag.

  14. Keep that insurance commercial gig going to secure your financial future cause it doesn’t look good.

  15. Only resign him to a team friendly deal. If he won’t take it, let him walk. Not worth destroying the rest of the roster for.

  16. Baker has made the Browns a good, bad team. The question is how do they take it to the next step?

  17. Nothing to see here, move along… move along (Leslie Neilson waving people away while a fireworks store explodes in the background)……..

  18. I actually read into this as Baker going on the offensive and changing the narrative. Instead of Browns evaluating him for his next mega contract, flip the script and put the insecure fans on notice so they come out and back him. It’s easy to throw the play caller under the bus. It’s been a bunch of things, but OBJ poisoning the well (he certainly did) did more than the others, even injuries, play calling etc. hrmph.

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