Written By: Ryan Lippert
Career stats at Oklahoma/Texas Tech Completion %: 68.5% (1,1026/1,497) Passing yards: 14,607 Passing TDs: 131 Passing INTs: 30 Rushing Attempts: 404 Rushing Yards: 1,083 Rushing TDs: 21
Strengths: My favorite prospect in the 2018 NFL Draft is by far Baker Mayfield. He reminds me a lot of Johnny Manziel when he was coming out of the league, who I was a huge fan of (and still am). The Heisman trophy winning quarterback out of Oklahoma was nothing short of a star in his college career. As you can see above, his numbers speak volumes. With that being said, his top strength would be his production, which you can’t hide. Other strengths of his are his mobility and athleticism. Mayfield showed on multiple occasions during his storied college career that he has both the ability to throw the ball and do damage on the ground. His mobility is also very helpful in scrambling outside the pocket and making ridiculous throws that not a lot of college quarterbacks can make on the run. The last strength that I think Mayfield possesses is leadership/heart. There wasn’t another player in college football that played with the amount of fire that Baker Mayfield played with. When it comes down to crunch time and the game is on the line, Mayfield uses his athletic ability to take over games and carry the team on his back. Although some people may see his attitude on the field as cocky, I think that it shows a type of confidence that you want to see in your team’s leader.
Weaknesses: The biggest weakness that I see that pertains to Mayfield on the field is his height. In an NFL quarterback, you want someone who stands tall in the pocket and can see the whole field with ease. At 6’1”, Mayfield is not the typical height that you would want in a quarterback in the league. However, his athletic ability and heart make up for his height difference. Also, it is important to note that there have been short QBs who have had success in recent history, such as Drew Brees and Russell Wilson. Another thing that could come back to hurt Baker is that he likes to dance around in and outside the pocket a lot. With more disciplined defenders in the NFL, this may not work as easily and could lead to sacks. Other weaknesses that some people may point out are his off the field issues and his relationships with teammates due to his ego. However, if he is brought into the right system and locker room, I don’t believe that those things will be an issue.
NFL Team Fits: The team that makes the most sense to me for Baker Mayfield is the New York Jets. Although they just signed Teddy Bridgewater, they will still likely draft a quarterback. Mayfield would be well worth their third overall pick and could be their quarterback of the future. If you pair Mayfield with newly acquired receivers Jermaine Kearse and Terrelle Pryor, along with Robby Anderson and running back Isaiah Crowell, I believe you have a very dangerous offense. Some other teams that make sense to me are the Miami Dolphins, New Orleans Saints, and San Diego Chargers. All three of those teams have established starting quarterbacks that Mayfield could learn from. If he were to go to the Dolphins, I believe that he could eventually challenge Ryan Tannehill for the starting job. For the Saints and Chargers, he would likely sit for two to three seasons behind Drew Brees and Philip Rivers. Although it would be great for Mayfield to learn from Brees, who is a shorter quarterback like himself, I believe that Baker is a player who can come in and start for a team right away. Although I believe that he is the top quarterback in the draft, I would stay away from saying that he is a good fit with the Cleveland Browns, because they have a bad history with top NFL quarterbacks. Also you saw what happened with Johnny Manziel in Cleveland, who like I said, reminds me a lot of Baker. With all things considered, I think any team would be lucky to have a talent like Baker Mayfield on their roster.