4 major observations from Baker Mayfield’s preseason debut

(Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images) Baker Mayfield
(Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images) Baker Mayfield /
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Baker Mayfield
(Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images) Baker Mayfield and Sam Darnold /

Botched snap highlights the need for more Baker Mayfield reps

One little glitch came during the drive when a botched snap between Baker Mayfield and center Pat Elflein resulted in a fumble that the quarterback, fortunately, fell on. This was a key component behind the team’s drive stalling and highlighted the dangers of splitting reps throughout camp in Spartanburg.

Of course, things like this can happen even with one player taking the majority of snaps. But the chances of occurrences like this coming to light decrease significantly.

Splitting reps with Mayfield and Sam Darnold was always risky. And just why Elflein continues to start at the center position despite the arrival of Bradley Bozeman in free agency is anyone’s guess.

This should be a wake-up call to Matt Rhule and his staff that the situation cannot continue for much longer. If they want to move forward with Mayfield as anticipated, then put the starting offensive line with him during practices and allow the signal-caller to develop cohesion in such a critical area of play.

Any more indecision could come with grave consequences. Mayfield looks more assured in the pocket, but that will only get him and the Panthers so far once competitive games commence and everyone starts going at full speed.

Overall, it was encouraging. However, this is a complication Carolina doesn’t need.

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