Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Panthers Veteran Sends Strong Message to Baker Mayfield Trade

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Carolina Panthers wide receiver Robby Anderson backtracked somewhat on his comments criticizing Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield, possibly fixing the fence in case the former top pick emerges via trade.

Earlier this offseason, with trade rumors circulating, Anderson openly criticized Mayfield on social media, apparently making it clear he doesn’t want him as his quarterback.

“Noooo,” Anderson commented on a post said that the most likely landing spot for Mayfield was Carolina. Anderson then doubled down and commented “facts” on a post that said he doesn’t want the former top overall pick as the Panthers quarterback.

Anderson explained his actions when speaking to reporters on Wednesday, June 15.

The Panthers have been linked with Mayfield since Deshaun Watson was sold to Cleveland, although the sides were concerned about pulling the trigger on a trade.

One situation that has been rumored is that the Browns could simply trade Mayfield for Sam Darnold, who went to Mayfield for 3rd overall pick in the same 2018 draft. Both are due a guaranteed $18.86 million thanks to their fifth-year options, but the Browns aren’t interested in making that happen.

Per Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com: “While the Baker Mayfield-for-Sam Darnold rumors have gathered momentum over the past week, it is highly unlikely that the Browns will make such a swap,” she wrote on June 15. “One said he was ‘confident it won’t happen.'”

Cabot cites that the Browns are confident in their current QB space, even with Watson suspended for a significant period. That would mean Jacoby Brissett pulls the start and Joshua Dobbs retires.

“I have faith in Jacoby. For a young player, he played a lot of football. He’s a smart player. He takes care of the football,” Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski said during mini-camp practice on Tuesday, June 14. “Good size, can do all the throws and things like that. He was repeatedly delinquent. Our offense is a bit different than what he’s done before, but he has a really, really good understanding of football – football intelligence – so I just think he’s a really good operator.

There was an added sense of urgency on the Panther side of the trade, with the offseason program stalled and Mayfield needing time with the playbook if a deal were to materialize.

“As minicamps begin today for the Browns and Panthers, trade talks between the teams led by QB Baker Mayfield continue, according to sources. The main issue remains Mayfield’s salary and how much (or how little) the teams pay.” Jonathan Jones of CBS Splocation tweeted on Tuesday 15 June. “The urgency on Carolina’s side is to execute the deal soon so Mayfield can spend some time at minicamp with the Panthers. For the Browns, it’s the best deal they have. Conversations are ongoing.”

The sticking point in the negotiations was the money owed to Mayfield. It was reported by the Charlotte Observer that the Panthers want the Browns to eat $13-14 million of the nearly $19 million Mayfield is due next season. While Cleveland will be willing to pay more depending on the compensation they receive for it, if the Panthers don’t leave that number, they’ll likely wait until a better situation arises.

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