Kevin Stefanski: I fully expect Baker Mayfield to bounce back next year

Cincinnati Bengals v Cleveland Browns
Getty Images

Playing through various injuries throughout the year, Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield struggled throughout the 2021 season.

In 15 games, he completed 60.5 percent of his passes for 3,010 yards with a career-low 17 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. The Browns went 6-8 in his 14 starts, as he missed two games to injury and one while on the COVID-19 list.

Mayfield’s last two starts were particularly poor, as he tossed four interceptions in the Christmas Day loss to Green Bay. And he completed only 42 percent of his passes in the Week 17 loss to Pittsburgh.

Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski was asked multiple times during the season if the team was considering sitting Mayfield to give him time to heal. But the only game Mayfield missed due to injury while Cleveland was still in postseason contention was the team’s Week 7 Thursday win over Denver.

“Baker fought through those injuries, was medically cleared to play each of those weeks and practiced throughout those weeks and felt good,” Stefanski said Monday, via Ben Axelrod of WKYC. “I don’t think Baker’s using any of that as an excuse and not denying that guys play through injuries.

Stefanski added that he’s seen Mayfield play at a high level and anticipates the QB having a better 2022.

“I fully expect him to bounce back next year,” Stefanski said, via Jake Trotter of ESPN.

The No. 1 overall pick of the 2018 draft, Mayfield is under contract through 2022 on his fifth-year option. But beyond that, the future is murky for Cleveland and its quarterback.

31 responses to “Kevin Stefanski: I fully expect Baker Mayfield to bounce back next year

  1. “I fully expect him to bounce back next year,”
    Kevin Stefanski must have learned how to say that when he was a Viking coach.

  2. I mean, really!? What else is he gonna say? “I’m stuck with this clown for one more year”?? C’mon man!

  3. The play calling was atrocious the Browns are the only team in the NFL when they are 3rd and 8 the play called is for a short 2 yard pass and expectations for the receiver to pick up the other 6 yds on his own this is a typical play called by Stefanski

  4. You may be the only one. Between your terrible playcalling and his terrible decision making, you’re a match made in heaven.

  5. I dont know how many times inside the opponents territory/red zone I screamed “Don’t get cute” and Stefanski did exactly that….he needs to look in the mirror.

  6. Coach follows up on that, “…also Baker is filming more Progressive commercials and Flo is joining him! Hasn’t got crap to do with the team winning in 2022 but hey it’s all I got.”

  7. Rich to see fans with 20+ years of top 5 draft picks running the likes of Mayfield and Stefanski out of town…

  8. Is Baker going to grow 5 inches in height? No he isn’t he’s an elf that cant see over the lineman. The Browns should stick with Keenum next year unless they can make a trade of some kind.

  9. Yeah, Baker is done in Cleveland. No way does a HC and GM entering their pivotal third years want to place their careers in the hands of a thin-skinned, drama queen who doesn’t work on fundamentals and is willing to throw anyone under the bus when it suits him. Especially when the owner has among the itchiest trigger fingers in the league. Baker doesn’t read the field well and, even before his injury, Mayfield was among the worst 4th Q QBs in the league. Sure the HC could improve the play-calling, but what plays do you call when you know your QB can’t read the defenses? I think the Steeler MNF game was the HC telling Mayfield, if you’re so good and willing to throw me under the bus, go win the game for us. And he was pathetic out there. Yeah, Baker is done in Cleveland.

  10. Fully expect him to bounce back

    great says all fans of the bengals, ravens and steelers lol

  11. “Is Baker going to grow 5 inches in height? No he isn’t he’s an elf that cant see over the lineman. The Browns should stick with Keenum next year unless they can make a trade of some kind.”

    Mayfield and Keenum are the same height.

  12. I fully expect Stefanski to be extremely disappointed again come this time next year LOL!!!! Browns drafted the wrong OU QB like year, had the Browns of drafted just one year later #1 overall pick CLV could of massively upgrad drafting all pro caliber 2X Pro Bowl QB Kyler Murray who does everything better. Instead Browns will be once again “back” in the quarterback market.

  13. Mayfield looks like he spends more time making those lame commercials than he does studying film and working on his FOOTBALL skills. God knows he’s a lousy actor and based on results an even worse QB. Arrogant little twerp. Cleveland would do well to cut him, but they won’t. That would be admitting they made a mistake in drafting him #1 (which they did).

  14. Not gonna win Baker. Keenum will get you as many wins as Baker. Need to move on, and find or draft Baker’s replacement. It’s a shame they have some good talent, with a good QB they are a contender. But, it’s Cleveland, and the get in their own way.

  15. Yeh, right…just like every week Stefanski said “I expect Baker to play at a much higher level”

    Case Keenum could have won 2 more games, easy

    Nice decisions Kevin

  16. Mayfield is an average starter at best. Cleveland would be wise to keep their options open.

  17. Well, he’s not in a position to get a new QB so he’s stuck with Baker whether he thinks he’ll get better or not. If he flops, they’re likely both gone anyway.

  18. bike1122 says:
    January 10, 2022 at 5:23 pm
    Fully expect him to bounce back

    great says all fans of the bengals, ravens and steelers lol
    Im sure Mason Rudolph will be tearing the league up next year.

  19. The bigger question that I have for the Browns is why are you not using D’Earnest Johnson more and what is the RB plan for next year? Better not just trade this guy away. He’s a legit 5 yd per carry running back.

  20. Best record ever vs AFC North teams. Won more playoff games than Lamar. Toughest since Loser at the helm. So, by all means, dump him to take back the role as NFL laughingstock. DeShaun will lead the way.

  21. The only thing that’s going to bounce is Mayfield’s body off the turf after another sack-filled season

  22. On bright side, if the Browns could’ve fielded 2 healthy OTs all year, they’d have won at least 2 more games; same if they had a kicker who could consistently put the ball through the uprights, better play calling, a healthy QB, or didn’t lose 2 games as much to COVID as to their opponents. Since most of those problems should self-correct, no time to panic.

    As for Baker, lots to improve. He telegraphs, resulting in ints and blocks, rarely throws before the break, regularly miscommunicates with WRs, can be sloppy with his feet, and with the picadors in the media, his insecurities manifest as arrogant petulance. Given that the bull usually dies in the end, why engage? The game that matters is won on the field, not on Twitter. In the Bengals/Chiefs game, Mahommes threw a no-looker, only to be followed by Burrow. Neither need to see the board to know where the pieces are. Mayfield seems to have to see a WR open, worries if the window’s closing too fast, double-clutches, and either throws errantly or takes a sack. Meanwhile, Stefanski’s calling the play that should’ve been called the week prior. We should’ve run play action boot on 3rd and 4 vs the Raiders who were stacking the box, and should’ve run against GB who had no answer for it. Those saying we should always run need to rewatch the Pats game. If the D is good and lines up 9 on Nick, we have to pass. If we can’t, we might squeak into the playoffs on Chubb’s shoulders, but we’re not going anywhere against a team like the Chiefs who can put 21 on the board in 2 minutes, or the Pats who can stuff the run. Honestly, instead of sitting on the ball for 3 quarters after getting a lead against middling competition early in the season, we should use those opportunities to develop our pass game, so it’s ready when we need it. Regardless, there’s no answer for QB in the draft, and slim pickins in FA, so might as well roll with Baker in 2022 and hope he can regain/improve on his form from 2020.

  23. curtis20 says:
    January 10, 2022 at 4:39 pm
    Is Baker going to grow 5 inches in height? No he isn’t he’s an elf that cant see over the lineman. The Browns should stick with Keenum next year unless they can make a trade of some kind.

    They’re nearly the same size, but at least Keenum has a weaker arm.

  24. Who is the real Baker Mayfield? The guy who put up nearly elite stats in 2nd half of 2020, against largely inferior teams, and won a playoff game for the first time this millennium?
    Or the injured, antsy QB who was indecisive and inaccurate since week 2?

    That is the $200M question. We’ll find out in 2022.

    PS: the commercials have nothing to do with anything. They shoot them in the offseason. Some of them are funny, or at least cute; some of them are just stupid. But none of them impact anything except those “fans” who just want to complain.

  25. What’s the browns record without Nick Chubb? What’s their record without Kareem Hunt? What’s their record without Baker Mayfield?

    Tells you all you need to know.

    Lol at the notion Mayfield has ever put up elite stats. He’s played well over a stretch in terms of complementing a dominant running game. But he’s never put up elite stats. Kirk Cousins and Ryan Tannehill have put up elite stats. Mayfield never has.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.