Baker Mayfield opens up in podcast interview

Sep 12, 2021; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) calls an audible against the Kansas City Chiefs during the first half at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 12, 2021; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) calls an audible against the Kansas City Chiefs during the first half at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports /

Baker Mayfield has been under scrutiny nationally, and in Cleveland in a lot of ways that have been unfair to him.

On Wednesday Mayfield appeared in a pre-recorded episode of the “Ya Neva Know” podcast. The former Sooner quarterback and Heisman winner came off as a very likable person, and a down to earth personality.

Many who have closely followed Mayfield’s career or are from his circle are certainly not surprised by that outcome. Mayfield talked about his situation growing up and gave insight ranging from his time walking on at Texas Tech to risking everything to walk on at Oklahoma. He gave honest insight of events of his life.

During the hour and a half interview, Mayfield barely spoke about the Cleveland Browns. For the most part, he resisted from burying the Browns franchise that placed him in a situation that was set up to fail.

But when asked if he felt disrespected by the Browns, he quipped:

“One hundred percent I feel disrespected. Because I was told one thing and they completely did another. That’s what I’m in the middle of right now. And you know what? OK. I got my taste of it because I’ve had four different head coaches in four years, a bunch of different coordinators. I’ve had the highs and they always come back.

Mayfield should feel disrespected. The Browns have held this young man back and failed to provide the stability that is necessary to develop a young quarterback. They have changed his footwork three times. One regime and coach wanted him to put on weight, another wanted him to slim down.

The three offenses he has played in are all philosophically different. Not to mention, the team failed him allowing him to play on a fully torn labrum, a deep bone bruise among other injuries, and the final straw is outright lying to him about his status and situation with the team.

The NFL is a business, and it’s about fit. If Mayfield doesn’t fit what the Browns want to do, fine, move on. But to lie directly to his face and seek out a quarterback that has 22 pending civil cases due to alleged sexual misconduct, is entirely a deceitful act. Of course, being the lightening rod he is, a few media outlets pulled out a couple of quotes to try and misconstrue the tone and the way the podcast conversation went.

Some media members and Browns fans took exception when Mayfield sheepishly said, “I would love to show up to someone’s cubicle and just boo the (expletive) out of them and watch them crumble.” Anyone who was watching the podcast knew this was something said in jest. However, with Baker Mayfield it pays to have a hot take.

Mayfield also opened up more about his injuries that everyone clearly saw affect his play last year. Something former Browns backup QB Case Keenum described as a “small miracle” that he managed to get onto the field and play most weeks.

“So, I tore my labrum completely, like full front and like basically 90 percent in the back. That was Week 2. I did that in the first half. Played the rest of the game, I was fine. . . . Four weeks later, we were playing the Cardinals, and I dislocated my shoulder again. But I dislocated it so bad and at a different angle that the bone, like the humerus that goes up into your shoulder socket, like the big bone right here (that) comes up into your ball and socket and it forced its way out.

And I fractured the bone because it wasn’t gonna be a clean exit. So I fractured the bone. So when I had the labrum done and that fracture, the inflammation and everything, I had no function in my left shoulder. And we were going into a Thursday game that week. Monday, I couldn’t lift my arm. When I couldn’t raise my arm, I was like, ‘I can’t do this.’

Mayfield is learning a difficult lesson, and other players should look at Mayfield as an example. Do not play with serious injury. It is not lauded, it is no longer heroic or viewed fondly.

Baker Mayfield, even hurt, certainly gave the Browns a better shot than Case Keenum to get to the playoffs. But the team that had been secretly interested in replacing him since October did not reciprocate the loyalty he showed them.

The Browns stabbed him in the back at his lowest point, despite the fact that before his injury he was playing at a top-10 level in the NFL (he finished 8th in Pro Football Focus grade in 2020) and regardless of his dedication to winning despite injury.

Some say the acronym NFL stands for “not for long.”  There is no loyalty to players, so look out for your own best interests. Fortunately for Baker Mayfield, on April 23rd he will be appreciated for all he did for the Oklahoma Sooners, when his Heisman statue will be dedicated.

Mayfield was asked about where he thinks he will play next, stating he believed Indianapolis a week and a half ago, (which may have been the case if the Browns had negotiated in good faith when he was first available) and now says, though he doesn’t know, Seattle would seem to make sense.

With the NFL draft coming up we will see who gets their quarterback, who jumps in on Mayfield, who is better than all the prospects in this draft cycle. Will it be Seattle? Will Carolina and the former Oklahoma standout suddenly have mutual interest, instead of disinterest?

Mayfield said “I am ready for the next chapter.” And so we will all wait with bated breath and see where that takes him..