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Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Articles tagged: Baker Mayfield

Baker Mayfield has lofty aims after winning Browns’ QB job

Baker Mayfield is officially the starting quarterback of the Cleveland Browns, and he has more on his agenda than just winning games.

Mayfield took the promotion in stride Monday, saying that he’s aiming to change the culture in Cleveland, not just lead the team to wins.

“I didn’t come here just to win one game, and I didn’t come here just to start the next,” Mayfield said, via Pat McManamon of ESPN. “We’re building a franchise here, and we’re turning it around. It’s about culture.”

Mayfield has never been shy about his belief that he can be the Browns’ long-term answer at quarterback despite the turmoil that traditionally follows that role. He’s got to be feeling even better about that after leading them to their first win on Thursday night. He certainly seems to have the mental fortitude to do what the Browns need him to do.

Browns officially name Baker Mayfield starting QB

The Cleveland Browns have made official what we all knew was coming, and Baker Mayfield will be making his first NFL start when the team travels to Oakland to face the Raiders next weekend.

On Monday, Browns head coach Hue Jackson said Mayfield will start in Week 4. However, he stopped short of naming the rookie the starter for the remainder of the 2018 season.

Tyrod Taylor left Thursday night’s game against the New York Jets with a concussion, and he did not practice on Monday. He’s expected to be cleared from the concussion protocol in time for Week 3, but he was never going to start after the performance Mayfield turned in while leading the Browns to a come-from-behind win.

Mayfield completed 17-of-23 passes for 201 yards vs. the Jets. He didn’t have a touchdown pass, but he also did not throw an interception and finished with a passer rating of 100.1, leading the Browns to a 21-17 win after they trailed 14-0 in the first half. If you want to know how impressive his performance was, just look at the way he fared against other rookie QBs making their debut in the past decade. The job is now Mayfield’s to lose.

Baker Mayfield jerseys are hot property after first Browns win

It’s safe to say that Baker Mayfield apparel was a very hot ticket in Cleveland Thursday night.

After Mayfield quarterbacked the Browns to a comeback win over the New York Jets in his first regular season appearance, Mayfield jerseys became an extremely popular seller.

How popular? According to figures from Fanatics, the operators of NFLShop.com, more people bought Mayfield jerseys in the two hours following Thursday’s game than top two sellers Khalil Mack and Tom Brady had sold in the entire day combined, according to ESPN’s Darren Rovell.

Mayfield is also proving much more popular than Cleveland’s last quarterback fad. In 14 hours after making his debut, Mayfield sold more jerseys than Johnny Manziel did on the day he was drafted by the Cleveland Browns, plus the day after that.

It’s easy to see why. Mayfield’s debut was uniquely outstanding. There will be ups and downs, but it looks like the Browns have a quarterback.

Christian Yelich: Support from Baker Mayfield was ‘cool’

Christian Yelich

Christian Yelich talked on Friday about the support he received from Baker Mayfield a day earlier, and he was glowing about it.

Mayfield showed up to the Cleveland Browns’ Thursday night game against the New York Jets wearing a Yelich jersey.

That was pretty awesome, but things got even better. Mayfield entered the game in the second quarter for his NFL debut and proceeded to lead the Browns to a 21-17 comeback victory — the team’s first win since Dec. 2016. Then after the game, Mayfield concluded his press conference by shouting out Yelich for NL MVP.

Yelich and Mayfield worked out together earlier this year at Proactive Sports Performance in Yelich’s hometown of Westlake Village, Calif. The two became quick friends.

That support has carried over into the season, where Yelich has enjoyed a breakout year for the Milwaukee Brewers, while Mayfield became the toast of Cleveland overnight.

Yelich talked about the support from Mayfield prior to Friday’s game against the Pirates and said the MVP shoutout was especially cool.

The way Yelich has been playing, Mayfield’s call for him to be NL MVP is tough to dispute.

Baker Mayfield earns highest grade for rookie in debut since 2006

If for some reason Cleveland Browns coach Hue Jackson decides to send Baker Mayfield back to the bench in Week 4, he will have to explain why a rookie quarterback who put together one of the best debuts in over a decade did not earn the right to start.

According to Pro Football Focus, that’s exactly what Mayfield did on Thursday night. The analytical site graded Mayfield’s performance against the New York Jets as the best by a rookie quarterback in his NFL debut since 2006.

After Tyrod Taylor left with a concussion, Mayfield completed 17-of-23 passes for 201 yards. He didn’t have a touchdown pass, but he also did not throw an interception and finished with a passer rating of 100.1, leading the Browns to a 21-17 win after they trailed 14-0 in the first half.

While calling Mayfield’s performance historic would be overdoing it for any other team, it probably qualifies as such for the Browns. Jackson wanted Mayfield to have a redshirt year behind Taylor, but there’s no way the coach can face this group of fans of he sticks with Taylor as his starter going forward.

Why Hue Jackson did not immediately name Baker Mayfield the starter after win

Hue Jackson

Anyone watching Thursday night’s game between the Cleveland Browns and New York Jets knows that Baker Mayfield stole the starting quarterback job away from Tyrod Taylor. Mayfield entered the game down 14-0 and led the Browns to a 21-17 win — their first victory since Dec. 24, 2016. He energized the team, looked great, and moved the ball — all of which Taylor failed to do.

Despite all that, Browns head coach Hue Jackson was not ready to name Mayfield the team’s starter after the game, saying he needed to watch the tape first.

“I’m going to watch the tape and make the right decision, the best decision for the organization and for our football team moving forward. That’s my job, that’s what I’ll do,” Jackson said.

Jackson’s unwillingness to publicly hand the reins over to Mayfield was met with anger from many fans, but there could be a few good reasons for Jackson’s caution in making the pronouncement.

One, Taylor suffered a concussion in the game. It would be pretty crappy for him to find out he’s lost the starting job through his coach’s comments to the media, all while he’s trying to recover from a brain injury. The most respectful way to handle such a transition is by meeting with the players first and talking to them before telling the world.

Two, it’s possible that the handling of the quarterback hierarchy is an organizational decision, not one that Jackson makes alone. Think about it: new GM John Dorsey traded for Tyrod Taylor before drafting Baker Mayfield. Dorsey knew he was going to take a quarterback first in the draft but wanted a veteran to begin the season as a starter to allow the rookie a chance to learn pressure-free. Perhaps Jackson was toeing the company line all along by making sure everyone knew Taylor was the team’s starter. Therefore, he couldn’t alone declare Mayfield the starter anyhow.

Despite all this, expect the Browns to have Mayfield starting at quarterback in Week 4 at Oakland. There’s no way they can feel Taylor will give them a better shot at winning.

Lincoln Riley sends perfect tweet after Baker Mayfield’s comeback win

Lincoln Riley

Lincoln Riley finally got his chance to drop an in-your-face tweet to all the detractors, and he did so.

Riley watched his former quarterback at Oklahoma, Baker Mayfield, lead the Cleveland Browns to a comeback victory in his NFL debut on Thursday night. Then he sent a tweet he probably was waiting to send for a long time.

The flag plant was a reference to Mayfield’s actions during a September win over Ohio State last season. The eventual Heisman Trophy winner planted an Oklahoma flag in the middle of the stadium after the win, then ended up apologizing. Mayfield had a few other incidents throughout the season that led some to question his character. He is on his way to proving all of those matters were just noise and that he is a franchise quarterback.

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