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Buccaneers agree one-year deal with Baker Mayfield

Baker Mayfield will compete with Kyle Trask for Tom Brady’s old role as the Bucs’ starting quarterback.

INGLEWOOD, CALIFORNIA - DECEMBER 08: Baker Mayfield #17 of the Los Angeles Rams passes the ball against the Las Vegas Raiders during the second quarter at SoFi Stadium on December 08, 2022 in Inglewood, California.   Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images/AFP (Photo by Sean M. Haffey / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP)

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers and quarterback Baker Mayfield have reportedly agreed to a one-year contract. The deal gives the former number one overall pick another opportunity to prove himself as a starter and the Bucs, an experienced campaigner to fill the vacancy after Tom Brady’s retirement.

Mayfield, who finished last season with the Los Angeles Rams after being released by the Carolina Panthers in December, will earn $8.5million in 2023 according to multiple reports. The 2017 Heisman Trophy winner is expected to compete with 2021 second-round pick Kyle Trask for a starting position left vacant when Brady announced last month that he was ending his remarkable 23-year career.

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It’s been a whirlwind past 12 months for Mayfield, who was displaced as the Cleveland Browns’ starter last March following that team’s trade for Deshaun Watson and ultimately traded to Carolina in July. He made just six starts with the Panthers while struggling with injuries and erratic form, and was benched in mid-season before later after for, and being granted, his release.

Resurgence with the Rams

Mayfield’s performance improved after being claimed off waivers by the Rams, as he completed 63.8 per cent of his passes while throwing for three touchdowns with two interceptions in four starts. In 12 overall games in 2022, Mayfield finished with 2,163 passing yards, 10 touchdowns and eight interceptions and a 79.0 passer rating that ranked 30th out of 33 qualified quarterbacks.

Mayfield has made 69 regular-season starts since being taken by the Browns with the top overall choice of the 2018 draft and has compiled 16,288 passing yards, 102 passing touchdowns and 64 interceptions along with a career passer rating of 86.5. The 27-year-old’s best season came in 2020, when he threw for a career-high 26 touchdowns and produced a 95.9 quarterback rating while leading Cleveland to an 11-5 regular-season record and a win over rivals the Pittsburgh Steelers in the Wild Card round of the AFC playoffs.

Trask has yet to make an NFL start and boasts just one appearance, which came in the 2022 regular-season finale. The Florida product completed three of nine passes for 23 yards in relief of Brady in a loss to the Atlanta Falcons.


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