Will The Browns Bench Baker Mayfield, Trade For Cam Newton?
Will the Cleveland Browns bench Baker Mayfield and trade for Cam Newton?
Following the acquisition of Odell Beckham Jr. over the summer, many considered Cleveland a favorite to come out of their division.
The pairing of Beckham and Jarvis Landry was supposed to provide Mayfield with enough offensive tools to allow the young quarterback to take the next step in his progression.
Unfortunately, the hype never actually translated into on-the-field success.
The Browns currently sit at 2-4 through six games and Mayfield has a league-leading 25 interceptions since the beginning of 2018.
While some of Mayfield’s woes can definitely be attributed to a weak offensive line, the former Oklahoma star also deserves part of the blame.
While appearing on the Rich Eisen Show this week, ESPN analyst Ryan Leaf spoke out about the big issues he is seeing with Mayfield.
— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) October 15, 2019
“When things start to go bad, you put yourself out there in this form and people can easily attack it.
“I have a very small sample size. 2-0 to start my NFL career. I was talking a lot of smack.
“And then I walk into Kansas City and put up the worst football game of my existence. I’ve always been this brass, arrogant kind of guy,” he continued.
“That’s the way I came back at everybody instead of just walking in front of the camera and going, ‘Oh my god.
“This was my fault and I’m going to do everything I can to make sure it doesn’t happen again.’”
Leaf noticed some very particular issues with Mayfield.
“Hearing Baker yesterday (Sunday), even though small, blame the officials for some calls is problematic for me.
“As the quarterback, you want to be able to stand up in front of everybody and take personal accountability.”
For better or worse, the Browns are built to win now. As such, it makes sense to wonder whether a second-year, struggling quarterback is the right person to lead that kind of team.
If Cleveland decides that Mayfield is not the right quarterback for this point in time, there is a former league MVP available on the trading block who could be precisely what they need – Newton.
Ever since Newton sat down with an injury, his backup Kyle Allen has led the Carolina Panthers to an undefeated record.
Despite the increasingly loud murmurs about how Carolina may not bench Allen when Newton returns to form, the one thing nobody has heard about is Newton acting like anything other than a true professional.
By all accounts, despite his starting position essentially being stolen from him due to injury, he has accepted the whole situation with the grace and leadership many have come to expect from him.
That is precisely the type of maturity a team like Cleveland could use right now.
Not to mention the fact that Newton is objectively a better quarterback than Mayfield when he is healthy.
Will the Browns ultimately pull the trigger on Newton?
It remains to be seen.