The writing may be on the wall for the Carolina Panthers’ quarterback competition, and it’s continuing to read “Baker Mayfield.”
Another league expert has thrown his two cents into the Baker bucket this week, stating Sam Darnold’s track record pales in comparison to Mayfield’s. And that man is NFL.com analyst and noted film hawk Brian Baldinger.
“If I put the résumé up of Baker Mayfield vs. Sam Darnold, it’s not even close,” Baldinger exclaimed. “Baker Mayfield comes in, he’s the No. 1 pick in Cleveland, he sets an NFL record for touchdown passes by a rookie in a season—he did it in 13 starts. Baker Mayfield went into Heinz Field and came out of the tunnel and led his team to a playoff victory against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Sam Darnold can’t make that claim.”
Unfortunately for Darnold, he can’t make a lot of claims over Mayfield to this point. The first overall selection of the 2018 draft has trumped the third overall selection of the 2019 draft in passing yards (14,125 to 10,624), passing touchdowns (92 to 54), completion percentage (61.6 to 59.8), passer rating (87.8 to 76.9), yards per attempt (7.3 to 6.5) and has been apart of more wins as a starter (29 to 17).
Baldinger went on to praise Mayfield’s makeup as well, stating he’s primed to take advantage of his potentially prosperous opportunity with the Panthers in 2022.
“This guy is born to compete,” he said. “That’s when you get him at his best. He’s not always going to be nice or friendly or maybe even team-focused sometimes. But this guy is going to go into Carolina, and he’s got this one carrot dangling in front of him, every day—those Cleveland Browns that he used to quarterback are coming to Carolina Week 1. Like, that is gonna motivate this guy every single day in this competition.”
And remember—if you happen to attend that season opener at Bank of America Stadium, do not bring one of Mayfield’s Browns jersey.