It’s not a question of if Baker Mayfield will be traded, but rather when.
The Cleveland Browns are scouring the market to offload the passer, who will be entering his fifth pro season in 2022, after acquiring Deshaun Watson in a blockbuster from the Houston Texans earlier this month. Their interest alone in Watson destroyed the relationship with Mayfield, who put in for a trade request after the Browns were initially alerted that they were out of the sweepstakes for the former Texans quarterback.
Now with Watson in their ranks on a five-year, $230 million deal, Cleveland management will be headed to the NFL’s annual league meetings — beginning Sunday and running through Wednesday — where they will “will likely try to make a deal there,” according to Cleveland.com’s Mary Kay Cabot.
The list of potential suitors is rather thin after a busy month of March saw numerous QB-needy teams address their issues before the NFL Draft.
One of the original teams believed interested in Mayfield, the Indianapolis Colts, acquired veteran Matt Ryan from the Atlanta Falcons last week. The Falcons responded by picking up Marcus Mariota with a chance to start — but it remains unknown if the franchise’s plan has him as the true No. 1 man heading into the 2022 season.
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The Seattle Seahawks could use a quarterback after dealing long-time face of the franchise Russell Wilson to the Denver Broncos. So could the Pittsburgh Steelers, who picked up Mitchell Trubisky after Ben Roethlisberger retired. Cabot, however, previously reported that Pittsburgh would jump to sign Mayfield if he was released by Cleveland and not necessarily pursue him on the trade market.
The Carolina Panthers appear to be moving on from the Sam Darnold experiment, but they are not believed to be interested in Mayfield — suggesting that they’ll take their chances at the draft.
Of course, the Texans could try to step in as they search for a quarterback — though the time to acquire Mayfield probably would have been in the Watson deal.
Here are the latest odds, courtesy of WynnBET (h/t Betsided):
Baker Mayfield next team odds
- Seattle Seahawks: +175
- Houston Texans: +250
- New Orleans Saints: +375
- Atlanta Falcons: +420
- Field: +700
- Cleveland Browns +1500