When some media outlets continue to refer to the quarterback situation for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as a "competition," they are speaking inaccurately.
I believe Kyle Trask is aware that this is Baker Mayfield's squad.
After struggling in the NFL for a few years, Mayfield is finally ready for what appears to be a huge comeback season. All things considered, he couldn't have asked for a finer circumstance.
Why would Mayfield shock everyone in 2023 and then recover? Really, it's quite easy.
1. Baker Mayfield provides a more balanced offense
Reflecting upon Mayfield's tenure with the Browns, a salient challenge he grappled with was an offensive system overly fixated on the run game, failing to optimize its array of offensive talents. Mayfield's Cleveland struggles can be attributed more to strategic shortcomings rather than his personal limitations. Interestingly, excluding his inaugural year, each season Mayfield spent with the Browns concluded with the team ranking in the bottom echelons of the league in passing.
In Cleveland, the dynamic duo of Kareem Hunt and Nick Chubb thrived, contributing significantly to the team's success. However, Mayfield himself was often restrained from fully unleashing his potential. The transition to Tampa Bay offers the prospect of a more harmonized offensive approach, eschewing an overtly run-heavy strategy. This shift could afford Mayfield the opportunity to showcase the pinpoint accuracy that had catapulted him to the coveted top selection mere years ago.
Naturally, this adjustment doesn't signify a complete abandonment of the run game. The Buccaneers grappled with a lack of commitment to a singular lead back, culminating in their league-worst rushing performance last season. With White now poised to assume that mantle, the offensive game plan can progress with a more decisive and focused trajectory.
2. For a quarterback who likes to sling it, Tampa Bay has two Pro Bowl weapons.
Odell Beckham Jr. and Jarvis Landry, two top-notch options in the passing game, were available to Baker Mayfield in Cleveland. But as we've already demonstrated, the Browns were unable to get those weapons open or use them effectively.
How long did it really take for David Njoku to be included in the offense? Take the 2020 season, for instance, where the Browns finished seventh to worst in passing offense despite having lots of resources. Beckham's season was obviously cut short by injury. Although Beckham played in seven games, his total receiving yards were only a little over 300.
Mayfield now has two additional experienced, excellent, and Pro Bowl-caliber receivers. One of the most important differences is that Mike Evans is the ideal wide receiver for Mayfield. Evans is the perfect target for the 28-year-old quarterback to let it fly with as he enjoys doing so.
Then there is Chris Godwin, who continues to be among the league's top and most underappreciated possession receivers. Godwin remains the pinnacle in terms of route running and opening. Unlike when he was in Cleveland, Mayfield will now be permitted to throw the ball, and unlike his brief stints in Carolina and Los Angeles, he will be able to throw some terrific weapons.
Tampa might be the ideal place for Mayfield right now to restart his career. He plays on an offense that excels at passing. What else was there to ask for?
3. Because Mayfield is a winner, his teammates readily support him.
Since graduating from college, Mayfield has always been and will always be a competitor. He succeeds. He has maintained that mindset throughout his life. And, in contrast to some earlier perceptions and rumors, Mayfield makes a great teammate.
No matter where he has played, including Cleveland, Carolina, Los Angeles, and now Tampa Bay, his teammates have always praised him for being a good teammate and player. Even earlier this year, Austin Hooper, a former teammate of Mayfield's, publicly addressed some rumors suggesting that Mayfield wasn't the best teammate.
Positive feedback has been received since joining the Bucs. The starting job appears to be firmly in Mayfield's hands, and his teammates have done nothing but support him. This individual was previously selected as the top pick for a reason, and he will demonstrate that reason. His coaching staff, himself, and his players all share this belief. You can take to NFL playoff betting and count on the former Oklahoma Sooner to have a strong year.