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#pounditMonday, May 20, 2024

Baker Mayfield linked to notable AFC team

Baker Mayfield in pads and a hat

Aug 26, 2023; Tampa, Florida, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) looks on against the Baltimore Ravens during the second quarter at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement Neitzel-USA TODAY Sports

It has been widely assumed that Baker Mayfield will re-sign with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers after he enjoyed a career revival of sorts with them in 2023, but the quarterback is expected to draw interest from plenty of teams. One of those quarterback-needy teams suddenly has a lot of ties to Mayfield.

ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler wrote on Friday that the Buccaneers are the “clear-cut favorite” to bring Mayfield back this offseason, but the New England Patriots could be a team to watch.

As Fowler notes, Patriots executives Eliot Wolf and Alonzo Highsmith were with the Cleveland Browns in 2018 when Mayfield was drafted first overall. Wolf was recently promoted to director of player personnel in New England, while Highsmith is also a personnel executive.

The Patriots also recently hired Alex Van Pelt as their new offensive coordinator. Van Pelt served in the same role with the Browns from 2020-2023, so he also has experience working with Mayfield.

Mayfield was a great fit with Tampa Bay last season. He threw for over 4,000 yards for the first time in his career and had a career-high 28 touchdowns compared to 10 interceptions. Mayfield led the Buccaneers to the playoffs, where they dominated the Philadelphia Eagles in the opening round before losing to the Detroit Lions.

The Bucs even consulted Mayfield on one big move they made this offseason, so they clearly want to bring him back. At least a few other teams will likely try to stand in the way of that happening.

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