Bad situation between Browns and Baker Mayfield becomes worse

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The Browns and Baker Mayfield may eventually need each other in 2022. Someone may be trying to blow things up before it ever gets to that point.

A new article from Jake Trotter of ESPN.com throws more bituminous on the burn pile in Cleveland, highlighting how and why player and team got to the point of no return. It comes at a time when a return has emerged as a potentially plausible outcome, especially with new starter Deshaun Watson possibly facing a longer suspension than anyone expects.

Here are the specific comments that caught our eye when reviewing Trotter’s article.

Regarding the events that led to the release of receiver Odell Beckham Jr., Trotter reports that OBJ didn’t call or text Mayfield after OBJ’s father posted a video of instances where Mayfield missed or overthrew Beckham, even though the pair “often played video games together” and had vacationed in Montana with other teammates over Labor Day weekend.

Then there’s this. An unnamed starter made the following comment when asked if he’d seen the video posted by Beckham’s father: “Why would I watch the video? I see it every day in practice.”

Trotter also reports that multiple sources close to Mayfield wonder whether the team specifically tried to make him “look as hapless as possible” in the Monday night finale in Pittsburgh, in order to make it easier to move on from Mayfield after the season. The Browns declined to provide a comment to Trotter as to those suspicions.

Mayfield also became upset when he learned via social media on March 15 that the Browns’ brain trust was flying to Houston to meet with Deshaun Watson. Per Trotter, the last straw came for Mayfield the next day, when ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reports that the Browns want “an adult” at quarterback.

Trotter’s story bears the fingerprints of Baker Mayfield or those close to him. It’s obvious he doesn’t want to stay in Cleveland. It’s also obvious that the Browns, who owe him $18.8 million this year fully guaranteed, aren’t inclined to let him go just because he wants to be gone.

How it plays out could become a huge story for the balance of the offseason, especially if the Browns continue to wait for a trade opportunity that may never arise — and if the Browns lose Watson for longer than they expect and hope to make Mayfield earn his $18.8 million playing for them.

Through it all, Mayfield needs to tread lightly. As explained recently, if Mayfield misbehaves the Browns could try to cut him for “personal conduct which, in the reasonable judgment of the Club, adversely affects . . . the Club” and avoid the $18.8 million obligation.

The passage of time may not make this any better. Barring a highly-unlikely serious injury to a starter on a team that opts to look elsewhere in lieu of using the “next man up,” the Browns may choose to play it out with Mayfield, tolerating the distraction of having him while waiting and hoping he makes the kind of misstep that will allow them to cut him and not pay him.

With the worst-case scenario — Mayfield being cut and going straight to Pittsburgh — now highly unlikely given the drafting of Kenny Pickett, maybe Chief Strategy Officer Paul DePodesta has cooked up something aimed at getting Mayfield to cross the line that allows them to cross him off the roster with no further financial obligation.

Hopefully, DePodesta’s four-month plan will work better than his “4-year plan.”

82 responses to “Bad situation between Browns and Baker Mayfield becomes worse

  1. The Browns are going from one selfish and childish player to possibly the worst.

  2. If he shows up and plays nice it will wreck the Browns’ season. They probably have a wrecked season anyway, but that locker room will blow up. I’m excited to watch it play out.

  3. Johnny Football Part II. More about spending time making commercials than game study and improving his skills.

  4. If they keep him on the roster I can imagine a scenario where a “nagging injury” may prevent Baker from doing anything besides becoming the highest paid clipboard holder in the history of the NFL.

  5. This guy was hurt most of last year. Has been above average when healthy. Has been exposed to some of the worst coaching in NFL history and plays in Cleveland. He’s a playoff QB most other places.

  6. Baker is on his way back to Oklahoma to be an assistant coach.

  7. It hasn’t been easy being a Bills fan since their inception but my goodness I feel bad for Brown’s fans.The misery never takes a break.

  8. There are no absolutes in life, but I am pretty sure i can guarantee two things.

    1. Baker will never be allowed to play another down in Cleveland based on what the lockerroom, coaching staff, and FO think about him. He was wronged by the Chris Mortenson quoting a Browns executive. However, Baker did his own permanent damage in the clubhouse. And that can’t be fixed.

    2. He will not suit up for the Steelers in ’22. Guaranteed.

  9. bringbackkosar says:
    May 5, 2022 at 4:57 pm
    just release the punk already and move on
    ————————-
    But they just signed him to a Quarter of a Billion dollar contract……

  10. Im looking forward to watching Baker Mayfield play for the Browns in 2022 like his contract says he is going to do.

  11. The bridge has been blown up, then burned, then nuked.. it’s time to move on for both parties. Browns GM is just as incompetent as Baker is immature.

  12. Mayfield must have learned something from Hue Jackson after all.Blame all your failures on others.

  13. After a brief flirtation with respectability the Brownies are back to being the laughing stock of the NFL.

  14. funny on all the people who take shots at the Browns on here never tell us what team they root 4.. easy to hide behind the key board..

  15. If you truly believe in yourself, and you believe that you have the talent that will guarantee you’ll be signed by someone else than make them cut you. Put it all out there, and force them to cut you. You’ll be free from that disfunctional franchise, and you can move on to the next phase of your career. That’s what I’d do at this point you don’t owe them anything so Force your way outta there

  16. So Jacoby Brisset is QB & Browns owe $30M to other qbs….sounds smart

  17. Mayfield plays 1 preseason game, gets a headache, sits out all year to collect that cash. If he does play, I’d expect the line to casually let through some defensive monster to crush him into the turf. He’s better off getting out of town, to Seattle, where he’d have a decent shot at redemption.

  18. Well that was fun for a little while, The Browns are back to being the Factory of sadness for years to come. Total dumster fire from top to the bottom. Hard to watch as a fan of the NFL. its better when the Brwons are half way good.

  19. Drafting Picket in no way precludes the Stealers from signing Mayfield. They know Picket needs a year of seasoning at least and an angry and vengeful mayfield is at least 2x Trubisky. Whether Cleveland cuts him with our without pay he’s going to be relatively cheap 1yr show me deal for the next teams. I think Pitt would still be all over it.

  20. Mayfield is a bottom 8 starting QB. Browns going no where with him. Glad they spent the $ and got an upgrade. Many teams wouldn’t.

  21. If you’re going to move on from your QB, at least have a plan on what to do with him.

    Bucs didn’t keep Winston around, Rams didn’t keep Goff around. They cut the cord, quick, and moved on with their new guys. And both won Super Bowls.

  22. The Browns front office is a joke. I’m not a fan of mayfield but you had the belief in the guy to make him a number 1 overall pick which was a mistake in my opinion and while he hasn’t lived up to the potential they seen in him to draft him that high he’s played decent and here we are 4 years after you draft you’ve basically admitted picking him was a mistake and to correct this mistake you make an even bigger 1 by trading for a guy that’s been accused of rape by 22 different women and giving the guy a contract fully guaranteed for $230 million. I know when it comes to money people will lie but when you have 22 people accusing you they all can’t be lying. cleveland has shown they are so desperate to win that if you can improve their team it doesn’t matter if you’ve raped or beaten up a woman because Watson isn’t the first bad decision they signed hunt after the chiefs cut him after he beat up a woman. If you believe in karma the browns will never prosper enough to win a superbowl as long as they continue making bad decisions like they have. If the browns want to move mayfield they will have to pay half his salary at least because no team is going to pay him $19 mil when they could still trade for garrapalo.

  23. Rumors that Factory of Sadness have moved from us to another city have been greatly Exaggerated. ~ The City of Cleveland

  24. Free Baker!

    Baker is a better QB on the field than half the league…
    Maybe better than 2/3!

  25. Baker should show up play it cool and get that 18 million, I would. Then if something happen where he had to play say something is wrong with my shoulder and take yourself out the game.

  26. frisco229 says:
    May 5, 2022 at 6:26 pm
    Mayfield is a bottom 8 starting QB.

    ———-

    That would be the guy they just traded for, not Mayfield.

  27. Baker’s gonna go full Ben Simmons this year. I actually don’t blame him.

  28. The worst mistake in the history of the NFL was to allow Cleveland another shot at pro football.

  29. The longer the Browns hold onto Baker Mayfield, the more I believe that the organization is just as responsible for this bad blood as Mayfield is. A pure classy and professional organization would have either traded him or cut him by now. But it seems like they are keeping him just to spite him which shows how petty this organization is. Mayfield is never going to play another snap for the Cleveland Browns, so trade them for a sixth round pick to somebody who’s willing to take on the contract, or cut them out right, and let them sign somewhere else.

  30. As a Browns fan, I hope he is forced to start the suspended games. Mayfield can play and is too damn competitive (and has the next K to worry about) to take a dive. With a gun to his head I think he would play out of his mind…and Cleveland would love it.

  31. If Trevor Bauer gets 2 years , then Watson deserves the same. Baker will be the starting QB all season unless he is injured.

  32. Baker has his problems, as do the Browns…try being a Panthers fan and listening to everybody complain about Quarterback play. CMON MAN

  33. Play nice, start game 1, throw 4 pick 6s, get cut, collect your guarantees.

  34. After the way the browns have treated mayfield, any attempt to cut him due to conduct detrimental to the team would be laughed out of court. The browns will pay him his money even if he torches the facility in Berea

  35. Imagine a season where a team is paying one QB $50 million for not playing and another $18m for not playing. Oops it may not be imaginary.

    Then what. Mayfield is unrestricted. Unless. Brown’s franchise him at $35m. Woulda bin $30 million but the Watson deal drove the QB franchise average up. Oops.

    I have watched a few steelers games in Cleveland. I really like the city and the game atmosphere. I feel sorry for the fans with this type of ownership and leadership. All I can say is… It does not have to be this way.

  36. Pittsburgh will never sign him. They love playing against him, not with him. Watch the tape, they’ve figured out how to play defense against him. Keep him in the pocket and just put your hands up, no need to rush him.

  37. If I’m an NFL player or prospect, this “trip him up” to avoid paying him makes me not want to hear about this team. No way I go to a team that screws me out of money when it suits them. Real bad move, worse look.

  38. The best way for Mayfield to stick it to the Browns is to show up and play well – say nothing bad about the team – but keep saying he wishes the owner was an adult every week.

  39. May 5, 2022 at 8:47 pm
    Play nice, start game 1, throw 4 pick 6s, get cut, collect your guarantees

    Genius idea! Completely destroy your career, never play another NFL game, then write a book in 4 years (ala Hue Jackson) blaming the Browns for your bad play!

  40. I don’t understand how this team for the most part has been so dysfunctional since its return in 1999. Not being a Browns fan I did enjoy watching them in the 80’s and early 90’s Back when Brian Sipe and Bernie Kosar were playing. Perhaps it’s their ugly uni’s, back in the day even for home games they wore white over white which I thought was sharp. The brown over brown is ugly.

  41. Lol everyone condemning the Browns FO as if they didn’t simply move on from a bust.

    How exactly did they “do Baker dirty”?? Did they force him to suck and be toxic to the lockerroom? Sounds like the whole offense is excited to move on from him. Sounds like the FO made the right call, if he was that toxic to the roster.

  42. Seems odd to think or expect that Beckham would contact Mayfield after his father went all Little League dad and tried to humiliate the quarterback. It would be nice to imagine that the receiver laid low out of sheer embarrassment.

  43. Well at least his commercials of him living at the stadium were entertaining

  44. I’m a Dolphins fan and I think Tua has shown enough to get another season with a more offensively functional Head coach, but if he was to pick up a bad injury either preseason or one of the first games I’d love to have Baker over Teddy.

  45. Such bafoonery must truly be seen to be believed!!! You can’t make this stuff up man. Sad for Cleveland fans tho. They deserve much better.

  46. henrythehorse says:
    May 5, 2022 at 5:47 pm
    funny on all the people who take shots at the Browns on here never tell us what team they root 4.. easy to hide behind the key board..
    ————————————————————
    Just out of curiosity, which team’s fans do you feel shouldn’t be laughing at this joke-of-a-team’s exploits?
    Signed,
    Patriots fan.

  47. Just when Cleveland sees the light at the end of the tunnel it turns out to be an express train barrelling the other way. One step forward 200 steps backwards. Baker, don’t shhot yourself in the foot (besides you’ll get brain damage if you do) do what is asked of you keep things calm. Don’t give them any excuse to deny your last year of your contract.

  48. bringbackkosar says:
    May 5, 2022 at 4:57 pm
    just release the punk already and move on

    _______________________________________________________________________

    Just which front office punk are you referring to? Because anyone but a Browns fan can see that organization is just continuing along the traditional path of being ignorant and useless. They have completely screwed the best QB they have had in years while betting the future on someone who has proven to be less mature and more selfish than Baker. And btw. Watsons stats are no better than Baker and he had better teams around him without having a different coaching staff every year. The Browns are going to be a dumpster fire for the next 5 years.

  49. The Browns made their bed, now they have to lay in it. I have zero sympathy for the dumpster fire they’ve chosen to create. The fans unfortunately deserve better, but they’ll probably never get it….

  50. Steelers will NOT be interested in the punk-show that is Mayfield, unless the Browns cut him & he agrees to go there. And why would he? He is too arrogant to compete w/ Trubisky & a first Rd pick. Browns have royally screwed themselves, and likely deserved it.

  51. The Cleveland Browns, doing Cleveland Browns things. There are reasons why some franchises just flat-out don’t win. Exhibit A.

  52. Mayfields value is a compensatory 3rd round pick. End of story. He will never, EVER, take another snap in a Browns uniform. Not even on the scout team. If he wants to play this year, he will have to make a deal with the Browns about the money. This is not hard to understand. It is business. He either takes a cut in pay and gets traded, to play THIS year, or, he takes his money and sits out. Those are his choices. The Browns have more value in him by paying him and taking the 3rd round pick. They are certainly not going to pay him and cut him.

  53. Bad owners never sustain long term success in the NFL. They may get lucky with a draft or a coaching hire and make the playoffs now and then but their teams will always revert to failure pretty quickly.

  54. Not a Browns fan but 1) they don’t want to eat that contract and 2) if the Cleveland FO waits, as painful as it will be, they will be able to dump (I mean, trade) Baker to some QB desperate team. You watch.

    Some ownership and GM will take on that fat contract and dish over some draft picks to mitigate what Cleveland has to pay for Deshaun Insatiable Watson.

  55. knightsfan… “you had the belief in the guy to make him a number 1 overall pick which was a mistake in my opinion ”
    this front office did not draft him. John Dorsey did.

  56. Those that think this is the browns FO butcher job are not smart people. Only listening to Media fake news. The LAST regime drafted this under sized, over rated, self destructing player. His play on the field has set his own market value……not the new FO. The new regime knows what they are doing and they have to try and get rid of the overpayed under performing player that THEY INHERITED DESPITE A LOW DEMAND FOR A PLAYER AS OF THIS CALIBER. 60% of you people are not understanding this is THE PLAYERS FAULT. Why is everything always the FO fault? Baker made the bed he is now sleeping in. Browns current FO now has a Top 5 NFL Qb. They just have not gotten the proper chance to discard the Loser the the LAST REGIME drafted yet.

  57. I’d be worried if any of this actually matters.

    4-6 game suspension for Watson, then he plays like a top-5 QB, and the Browns are in the playoffs. And Mayfield is a memory.

    But yes. Continue to believe “sources” and how the Browns are a disaster now.

    The Browns were literally a decent QB away from a playoff team last year. How dare they go and correct their biggest weakness.

  58. Jimmy G has more playoff wins than Baker, Much better looking, and doesn’t act like a clown.

  59. Baker will never set foot in the Browns’ facility again. If not cut or traded he will sit out the season and the Browns’ will go with backups already on the roster. End of story…

  60. All other things aside, Mayfield did play hurt all of last year. Would Watson do the same? And any smart organization would have heaped praise on him because it would increase the chances of moving him and getting a good return. Instead, the clueless Browns trashed him thus destroying his value and making it tough to keep him if they can’t move him. Textbook “Bad Front Office 101” stuff.

  61. BM is going to be fine. An avg qb who will get $18 million to play 4-6 games till Watson is off suspension. Seeing as how he has gone quiet, I am sure his agent told him to give the Browns no reason to cut him. Grab the 18 million and move on.

  62. Southpaw says:
    May 6, 2022 at 12:18 am

    Lol everyone condemning the Browns FO as if they didn’t simply move on from a bust.

    =====

    Right, so the guy who got the team their first playoff win in 30 years is a “bust”. Gotcha.

  63. they are worried about eating 18.8M on the guy who got them their 1st playoff win in forever, but they are not worried about eating 240M(45M per year fully guaranteed) on a qb the may not play for a year and then may complain and want out if they are not winning and doing what he wants??? i dont get it and look at the stats of both qb’s they are not very far apart.

  64. Do you think, maybe, that Mayfield was simply STUPID and ARROGANT to play hurt last yr? This “wow, Baker was so brave and a great teammate to play hurt” stuff is so annoying. He played w/ a verified torn labrum because he was a knucklehead, plain & simple. The Clowns were also stupid in letting him, as well.

  65. For everyone saying just cut him.

    Imagion you are walking in a parking lot and you drop a 20 dollar bill on the ground, are you going to make any effort to pick it up or are you going to just walk away from it laying on the ground.

    That’s what you are asking the Browns to do. 20 bucks or 20 million, they have to make a decision what’s best for them.

  66. Yeah, it was stupid for the Browns to trade for an elite QB when they already had an average QB. Yeah, nobody else would have been so stupid to make the Watson trade, except maybe at least 13 other teams. Yeah, the Clowns were so stupid that they traded for a better QB than what the Ravens or Steelers have. What a joke of a franchise!

  67. So you’re calling Baker “average” now? Seems like many Browns fans believed he was “elite” last yr. Funny how that changes on a dime. And additionally, I don’t know if Watson is considered ‘elite”, just yet. I’d say there are at least 7 QBs in the league that are definitively considered better, and don’ have 22 civil suits hanging over their head, like a guillotine.

  68. iloveyouneighbor says:
    May 6, 2022 at 5:19 am
    henrythehorse says:
    May 5, 2022 at 5:47 pm
    funny on all the people who take shots at the Browns on here never tell us what team they root 4.. easy to hide behind the key board..
    ————————————————————
    Just out of curiosity, which team’s fans do you feel shouldn’t be laughing at this joke-of-a-team’s exploits?
    Signed,
    Patriots fan
    ————————————
    Totally Agree.
    Signed,
    Seahawks’ fan

  69. This is Baker people, constant drama, attitude, not enough wins, unlikable, arrogant

  70. Southpaw says:
    May 6, 2022 at 12:18 am
    Lol everyone condemning the Browns FO as if they didn’t simply move on from a bust.

    How exactly did they “do Baker dirty”?? Did they force him to suck and be toxic to the lockerroom? Sounds like the whole offense is excited to move on from him. Sounds like the FO made the right call, if he was that toxic to the roster.
    ————————————————-

    Bust? Really? He was drafted by a 1-31 team and immediately improved the team’s fortunes. He got them their first playoff win in ages. Held together with duct tape, he still got 8 wins last year.

    It’s fine that you don’t like Baker, but the team took a difficult situation and threw gas on the fire. Could you picture any successful organization treating a player like this?

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