I’m putting this statement out there right now because it’s important to be on top of things and to call them early. There are no more excuses for Baker Mayfield. NONE, ZERO, ZILCH. However, there is good news. The former number one overall pick in 2018 will be better than he was a year ago.
People can get upset with me all they want. That’s fine, I don’t care. I’ll say the same thing that I said years ago. Mayfield is a 3rd-4th round prospect. He can range anywhere from Case Keenum to Kirk Cousins. IF he’s going to make it, he needs a lot of help.
The good news is he has help. Let me rephrase. I’m not sure anybody in the league has more help.
The number one factor that makes life easier on a young quarterback is a great run game. Ryan Tannehill needs Derrick Henry. Lamar Jackson needs Mark Ingram. Kirk Cousins needs Dalvin Cook. Baker Mayfield needs Nick Chubb.
Do people realize how much easier life is when you have a running back averaging over 5 yards per carry? The fact that Mayfield was still bad under that circumstance tells you everything you need to know. The good news is, Chubb is going to be a lot like Dalvin Cook was for Kirk Cousins. This time, he has a head coach that’s going to make it a run first offense. Oh, and he has Kareem Hunt as a secondary back. Who else has that? Nobody.
How many weapons does this guy need? Odell Beckham, Jarvis Landry, Austin Hooper, and David Njoku. More than good enough. He might not even need him. The defense is stacked and all he has to do is hand the ball off to Nick Chubb.
The offensive line is totally fixed. The tackle position has been upgraded by leaps and bounds. Jedrick Wills and Jack Conklin come to town. Joel Bitonio was already a monster. Nick Chubb performed with a shaky offensive line. What’s the excuse for Mayfield?
Maybe most importantly, he SHOULD have a capable head coach. Kirk Cousins and Case Keenum were both great in Minnesota. There are times Mayfield looks like an unathletic deer in headlights sometimes in the pocket often times fleeing for no reason. He’s got happy feet back there. Stefanski’s heavy play action system should help him. 9 of Mayfield’s 22 touchdowns came on the play action pass. Kirk Cousins led the NFL with 14. Mayfield’s passer rating was 36.8 points better on the play action. Stefanski will use him smarter.
A lot of young quarterbacks weren’t given a fair chance. The circumstance that Dwayne Haskins was given last year was total BS. Sam Darnold has the worst supporting cast in the league. He still went 7-6. There is no excuse for Baker Mayfield. I would like to state I think he will be better in 2020. If not, then there’s a serious issue. There’s no reason this team shouldn’t make the playoffs. This could easily be make or break time for Baker.