Baker Mayfield may still be a Cleveland Brown but the team’s decision to keep him away for mini-camp is a signal to the league that he won’t be suiting up for the team in 2022, one NFL analyst said this week.
“If they’re not wanting him in the building during the mandatory phase of mini-camp, then it stands to reason that they’re not going to want him in training camp for games,” NFL Analyst Solomon Wilcotts said during SiriusXM’s NFL Radio show Opening Drive.
As of now, Mayfield is on the books for more than $18 million this year, leaving the club with two options: Unload him in a trade, even if it might force the team to swallow some of that money or keep him and pay his 2022 salary to stay home.
The latter might seem ridiculous but it happens — as recently as 2021 with the Browns’ new franchise player, Deshaun Watson.
“The Cleveland Browns gotta ask (themselves): What’s their endgame? Are they gonna pay him to sit at home?”
If not, it may mean making another difficult decision — particularly if other teams aren’t willing to take on his entire cap hit.
The only teams linked to a possible Mayfield trade have been the Seattle Seahawks and Carolina Panthers in recent months. But neither club is believed to have made an offer.
The Browns’ three-day camp begins June 14.