Until the week before the 2018 NFL Draft, not many people even considered that Browns would take Baker Mayfield with the No. 1 overall pick. Then they did, and it’s becoming more clear why.
Coming into the 2018 NFL Draft, there were questions and flaws with all of the top quarterbacks. There weren’t any guys like Andrew Luck who seemed destined to start Week 1. Baker Mayfield has the biggest flaw in the book, which is that the style of offense he played at Oklahoma isn’t really conducive to molding NFL talent.
Well, Mayfield is playing the part right and saying all the right things.
NFL Network’s Aditi Kinkhabwala asked him how treating this like he’s a walk-on — he walked on at both Texas Tech and Oklahoma — serves him well, and his response was perfect.
I have to handle it like that. It doesn’t matter where I got drafted or if I got drafted. You have to come in with the mentality of going to work.
He also told ESPN’s Tony Grossi this in reference to learning how to play under center, which he didn’t do much of in college:
We are going to hammer that until I am good and it feels natural. That is the way it should be because I can play out of the ‘gun. Everybody here knows that. We are going to hammer that and we are going to work on what I need to work on so that we can go from there.
So far, so good for Mayfield. By all accounts, he’s working hard, and he can handle the media well and answer questions correctly.
He had a few interceptions early on in camp, but that’s okay. Those will happen from time to time with rookies who are learning something new. For now, he is showing the maturity that’s needed from an NFL quarterback.
It is early in the process, and he hasn’t hit any real adversity yet. That said, as of now, he’s handling everything like a mature young man who has everything to prove, and that’s great given he’s the No. 1 overall pick. We can see why Browns general manager John Dorsey went from having Sam Darnold No. 1 on his board to Mayfield. Now Mayfield just has to continue doing what he’s doing to make Dorsey look like a genius.