The working relationship between the Cleveland Browns and former No. 1 overall pick Baker Mayfield didn’t end on good terms. After months of jostling and the Browns trading for Deshaun Watson, Mayfield was dealt to the Panthers in early July.
While the Browns did pick up the fifth-year option of Mayfield’s deal, they weren’t willing to commit to him long term. Instead, they opting to trade for the embattled Watson while giving him the biggest fully guaranteed deal (five-years, $230 million) in NFL history.
The Mayfield trade also brings intrigue, as the Browns travel to face the Panthers in Week 1 of the NFL season. The clash is a chance for the emotional and charismatic Mayfield to immediately prove to his former team they made a mistake.
Following the Panthers’ preseason finale win over the Bills, Mayfield told Bills sideline reporter Cynthia Frelund the following.
“I’m going to bleep them up.”
Let’s try this again.
Kickoff is at 7:36 PM 🏈 pic.twitter.com/zzWfKi4bxu
— Carolina Panthers (@Panthers) August 26, 2022
Frelund told former Browns QB Dan Hanzus the PG-13 version of what Mayfield said.
“I walked up to him and said, I’m so excited to see you, like go kick some butt, I didn’t say that word. Go kick some butt, especially Week 1, I like cannot wait. And he uses some expletives and I was like, ‘I just hope you’re ready.” He was like, “I’m gonna bleep them up.’”
Mayfield is no stranger to controversial comments or actions on the gridiron. Who can forget him grabbing himself in a lewd way and directing it towards the opponent’s sideline while at Oklahoma. He also stuck the OU flag in the turf at midfield after the Sooners won at Ohio State. That’s just two instances where Mayfield showed how he can be a bit of a hothead. So him speaking in that manner isn’t all that surprising.
Former Teammate Myles Garrett Looks Forward To The Challenge
Garrett and Mayfield were never the best of friends, but there was a mutual respect between the two former No. 1 picks. And Garrett elaborated on Mayfield’s demeanor and how he carries himself. “Flash” Garrett told Cleveland.com this:
“We’ve known he has that type of demeanor and that attitude, and for better or for worse, it works for him. And I’m not mad at him using that fire and that chip to help him play to the level he has. He’s been successful in what he’s done.”
“Talking like that and moving the way he does, it’s worked for him. He uses that for fire for motivation, and I think speaking like that helps amp him up.”
— Mary Kay Cabot (@MaryKayCabot) August 30, 2022
Garrett also mentioned that Baker’s comments will be used as a bit of motivation for the Browns.
Browns coach Kevin Stefanski isn’t feeding into Mayfield’s comments at all, stating that nothing about what Mayfield said would be used in the locker room as motivation.
Mayfield Looking To Salvage Career In Carolina
Mayfield will be playing on the fifth-year option from Cleveland. He also knows he needs to catch fire by recapturing the magic of 2018 and 2020 where he combined for a 17-11 record as starter for the Panthers brass to be willing to give him a long-term extension at season’s end. He also passed for 7,288 yards, 53 touchdowns and 22 interceptions, leading the Browns to an 11-5 record and a playoff win at the archrival Steelers.