The Carolina Panthers think they’ve found their quarterback of the future, as multiple reports say they have traded for Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield.
Mayfield was the first overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, but hasn’t found his footing completely with the Browns.
The Browns traded for Houston Texans‘ quarterback Dashaun Watson in the offseason, and apparently feel comfortable enough with his current legal situation to get rid of their previous starter.
Carolina is said to be giving up a conditional fifth-round draft pick in the 2024 draft, a somewhat surprisingly light haul for the former Heisman Trophy winner at Texas A&M.
Mayfield was just 29-30 as a Browns starter. But played with a shoulder injury most of last season, and publicly demanded a trade after the Watson trade.
“It’s in the mutual interest of both sides for us to move on,” Mayfield said to ESPN’s Adam Schefter. “The relationship is too far gone to mend. It’s in the best interests of both sides to move on.”
In a social media post in March, Mayfield said “The past 4 years have been nothing short of truly life changing since I heard my name called in the draft to go to Cleveland. This is not a message with hidden meaning. This is strictly to thank the city of Cleveland for embracing my family and me. We have made many memories and shared growing in this process through all the ups and downs.
“I have no clue what happens next, which is the meaning behind the silence I have had during the duration of this process. I can only control what I can, which is trusting in God’s plan throughout this process. I have given this franchise everything I have. That is something I’ve always done at every stage, and at every level. And that will not change wherever I take my next snap. Whatever happens … I just want to say thank you to the fans who truly embraced who I am and the mentality that aligned so well with this city’s hard working people.
“Cleveland will always be a part of Emily and my story. And we will always be thankful for the impact it has had and will have in our lives. Sincerely, Baker Reagan Mayfield.”
He now joins a crowded quarterback room in Charlotte.
The Panthers currently have Sam Darnold, PJ Walker and Matt Corral on the depth chart. It’s not likely all of those players will be in Carolina much longer.
Darnold started 11 games for the Panthers in 2021, going 4-7 in his starts, as he threw for 2,527 yards, 9 touchdowns and 13 interceptions in his first year since being acquired from the New York Jets. He was the third overall pick in the 2018 draft.
With many uncertainties, here is where my head and heart is. pic.twitter.com/psipN96cmh— Baker Mayfield (@bakermayfield) March 16, 2022