4 reasons why Baker Mayfield is the Panthers best QB option in 2022

(Scott R. Galvin-USA TODAY Sports) Baker Mayfield
(Scott R. Galvin-USA TODAY Sports) Baker Mayfield /
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Carolina Panthers
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Baker Mayfield would bring proven credentials to the Carolina Panthers

Much has been made about Baker Mayfield’s regression last season. But in all honesty, a lot of that can be attributed to a shoulder injury the quarterback played through and had surgery on immediately after the 2021 campaign came to a conclusion.

This has clouded judgment surrounding the signal-caller and what he could potentially bring to the Carolina Panthers. It’s easy to forget about how well he performed over his first three seasons in the league, which even saw the Heisman Trophy winner lead the Cleveland Browns to their first playoff win in decades against the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2020.

Mayfield has accumulated 14,125 passing yards, 92 touchdowns, and a 61.6 completion percentage over his time in the league so far. If he can get back to anything like his 2020 form that also came with Cleveland earning an 11-5 record, it represents a significant upgrade on anything the Panthers currently possess on their roster.

The Browns are reportedly willing to pay half of Mayfield’s $18.85 million cap number as part of the trade, according to Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated. Carolina is looking for them to add a little more, but it does appear to be a fair offer depending on the draft compensation.

Some fans might not like it given Carolina’s dismal run of success when it comes to quarterback acquisitions since Matt Rhule took charge. But unless Jimmy Garoppolo is released or Cam Newton comes back, then Mayfield has the proven credentials that can’t be found anywhere else at this stage of the preparation period.