Updated: Mar 24
(Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)
According to longtime Browns reporter Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com, the Steelers would “pounce” on the opportunity to sign Baker Mayfield if he is cut by the Browns.
"I had somebody tell me today that ... the Steelers will pounce on Baker Mayfield if he becomes available,” Cabot said on the Orange and Brown Talk podcast. “Like if they cut him and he’s just out there as a street free agent, they would take him in a minute.”
Despite the fact that Deshaun Watson is still facing 22 civil lawsuits for sexual misconduct, the Browns traded three first-round picks and two additional picks - on day two or three - to the Texans for Watson. They also rewarded Watson with a fully guaranteed five-year, $230 million contract, which is $80 million more than the previous record for fully guaranteed money at signing ($150 million).
So, the Browns are now in limbo with Mayfield and trying to trade the understandably disgruntled quarterback. Cabot says that there hasn’t been much movement on the trade front so far. And if no deal can be found, the Browns would probably just cut Mayfield or be forced to pay his large contract for him to sit behind Watson in 2022.
Yes, Mayfield would probably be a better option than Mitch Trubisky, but I don't know by how much. Mayfield has been pretty disappointing for a No. 1 overall pick. He would cost a lot more than Trubisky also, who's on a pretty cheap deal.
Mayfield has thrown 56 interceptions in four seasons with the Browns. He's also thrown more fourth-quarter interceptions than any quarterback since he was drafted in 2018. I just don't think Mayfield is worth the trouble. I think the Steelers are fine with having Trubisky as a bridge quarterback and they'll look to trade up for Malik Willis in the draft. If they can't land Willis, they'll get their quarterback for the future in the 2023 NFL Draft then. Trubisky should be at least serviceable.
Eventually, the Browns will find a trade partner for Mayfield. The Browns will probably not get as much as they think though. I can't blame teams for not wanting to give up a lot, either. Mayfield is just not worth a lot of draft capital.