Monday, July 15, 2024
Home NFLTampa Bay Buccaneers Baker Mayfield considered one of offseason’s key players

Baker Mayfield considered one of offseason’s key players

by Moxieplay

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are gearing up in an attempt to win the NFC South for the fourth time in a row. To do that, they’ll need a quarterback, and they almost certainly want that quarterback to be Baker Mayfield.

Mayfield had a productive year with the Bucs, passing for 28 touchdowns for over 4,000 yards and tossing six more touchdowns in the playoffs. Mayfield’s career faces a resurgence of sorts ever since he began a rough go of things after 2020, and that resurgence makes him one of the NFL’s most important offseason pieces according to ESPN.

ESPN’s Dan Graziano compiled a list of players he believed to be the most important heading into the offseason, and Mayfield was the second player mentioned. Here’s what he had to say about Mayfield’s 2023 campaign and the expectations going into the offseason:

The marriage between Mayfield and the Bucs was a productive one, and Tampa Bay will likely try to bring him back — even if that means a franchise tag. New Bucs offensive coordinator Liam Coen overlapped with Mayfield toward the tail end of the 2022 season when both were with the Rams. (Remember Baker with the Rams? I know, right?)

The question is, what’s the right deal for Mayfield? He signed a one-year deal worth up to $8.5 million last March and then threw 28 touchdown passes for the NFC South champs. Should he now make Daniel Jones money? Should he make more? How big of a bet will the Buccaneers want to place on the idea that Mayfield’s 2023 was a true renaissance rather than the latest peak in a peaks-and-valleys career?

To begin, it’s unlikely Mayfield is seeing a franchise tag — that will probably go to safety Antoine Winfield Jr., so if Mayfield is a Buccaneer next year, it will likely be on a long-term deal. The Bucs will probably want to avoid paying him Daniel Jones money, too, as Jones’ average of $40 million could be pricey if they want to bring back a Bucs legend like Mike Evans in free agency.

Whether or not this is a true renaissance for Mayfield as Graziano mentioned does remain to be seen. The Bucs and Mayfield are going to find out in 2024, however, and they’d probably like to find out together.

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