You can talk yourself into it making somes sense, if you want to, but the Detroit Lions should not even think about trading for Baker Mayfield.
As the Detroit Lions look for some kind of upgrade in quarterback play, in 2022 and/or beyond, it’s not necessarily completely ridiculous or a completely new idea. But Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk has brought it back to attention.
"At some point last year, when the possibility of quarterback Baker Mayfield leaving the Browns first crystallized, one team struck me as an intriguing potential destination.The Detroit Lions.Mayfield’s mindset and attitude mesh with the current mindset and attitude in Detroit, courtesy of coach Dan Campbell and executive Chris Spielman. Mayfield has the moxie, the edge that the Lions have lacked at the quarterback position for decades. Maybe all the way back to Bobby Layne.The Lions would have to control Mayfield, and Campbell seems like the kind of coach who can get through to the player, to properly harness the best parts of that personality, and to guide him out of the areas where it can become problematic."
The Detroit Lions don’t need, and shouldn’t want, Baker Mayfield
Florio did acknowledge the elephant in the room–Jared Goff. He has a $15.5 million roster bonus coming March 17 (tomorrow as I write this). Trading him before June 1, now with that roster bonus now accounted for via Over The Cap, would bring a dead money hit of $15 million and clear $16.15 million in cap space. If there were a team interested of course.
Mayfield being set to play out his fifth-year option in 2022 ($18.8 million) makes him a worth flier for some teams with no multi-year commitment to take on. It’s worth noting, as Florio did, that former Browns general manager John Dorsey is now working for the Lions. Dorsey drafted Mayfield as Cleveland’s GM, and may be (as Florio eloquently put it) “banging the drum” for Detroit to trade for the No. 1 overall pick in the 2018 draft.
Mayfield has some swagger and attitude that makes him come off like a franchise quarterback at times. But the numbers over broader samples say he’s not truly any better a quarterback than Goff. And at every turn possible, Mayfield shows how he struggles to handle adversity, criticism and most recently the Browns’ interest in Deshaun Watson.
Yes, the Lions should have tried harder to find a veteran backup quarterback before just re-signing Tim Boyle.
But Mayfield won’t be taking a clear backup role anywhere he may be, and even fully healthy after being banged up for most of last season he’s not an upgrade over Goff. The Lions don’t need the headache Mayfield brings, even if Dorsey is banging the drum loudly enough (metaphorically) to give general manager Brad Holmes a headache.