Baker Mayfield is entering his fourth year with the Cleveland Browns. The team has already picked up his fifth-year option worth $18.9 million for next year, but long-term extension talks have been in the air.
There are a number of big young quarterbacks in contract limbo from that 2018 NFL Draft. Mayfield, Josh Allen, and Lamar Jackson are all looking for huge deals. The latter two have either won or been in the running for the MVP, so they could help shape the market whenever they agree to their deals with the Buffalo Bills and Baltimore Ravens, respectively.
Mayfield is a more interesting case. He’s been up-and-down as Browns quarterback. Last season, he led the team to heights they hadn’t reached in years, but he was something of a game manager, aided by an elite rushing attack and good weapons. It seems unlikely that Cleveland wants to pay him superstar money, but finding a new quarterback could derail some legitimate title aspirations.
He’s maintained throughout the offseason that he isn’t worried about the status of his contract. Amid reports that there haven’t been “substantive talks” between the two sides, Baker is sticking with the safe line here.
— Mary Kay Cabot (@MaryKayCabot) July 21, 2021
“I think everything will play itself out,” Baker Mayfield told reporters on Wednesday morning. “I’m not worried about it at all. If we win, we’re heading in the right direction.”
Mayfield completed 62.8-percent of his throws for 3,563 yards, 26 touchdowns, and just eight interceptions last year, down from 21 a year before. With Odell Beckham Jr. healthy, and the Browns coming off their best season in decades, expectations are very high this fall.
Spotrac pegs his market value at four years, $141 million, which would put him a bit shy of the elite Patrick Mahomes, Dak Prescott tier in terms of annual pay.