Baker Mayfield Offers Glimpse Behind Free Agency Decision - Sport News

Baker Mayfield Offers Glimpse Behind Free Agency Decision

Tampa Bay Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht prioritized retaining Baker Mayfield following the quarterback’s resurgent 2023 campaign, but, it was anything but a lock that the two sides would get a deal done.

Mayfield ultimately signed a three-year contract worth $100 million that includes $50 million as a colossal commitment that the former No. 1 overall pick can continue on his upward trajectory and take the Buccaneers’ offense to new heights, beginning in 2024.

Baker Mayfield gets called 'a 10 on the pr--- scale' by Bucs GM, then thanks him: 'I'll take that' - Yahoo Sports

Baker Mayfield’s Take on Tampa Bay
However, it was far from a certainty that Baker Mayfield’s contract would ultimately come to fruition.

“There were times that the couple days prior we didn’t know if we were going to get it done before free agency hit,” Mayfield recently told reporters, via ESPN. “So it was a lot of ups and downs. … I had to think about [Plan B]. … We wanted to be back, but if it wasn’t going to be the right fit for us, we were going to let God take control again and that was the big thing. We tried to be as patient as we could. I would be lying if I said we were happy the whole time, but it worked out how it’s supposed to.”

Last season, Mayfield surpassed 4,000 passing yards for the first time, finishing with 4,044 along with 28 touchdown passes to just 10 interceptions.

Mayfield’s return coincides with a two-year deal with All-Pro wide receiver Mike Evans, after the quarterback-receiver duo connected on 79 receptions for 1,255 yards and 13 touchdowns in what was among the most prolific seasons of Mayfield’s career.

One current NFL executive recently told me that the Buccaneers’ keeping Evans and Mayfield together was the most impactful pair of decisions of the offseason, so far.

Despite former Buccaneers offensive coordinator Dave Canales leaving to become head coach of the NFC South-rival Carolina Panthers, Tampa Bay clearly believes that a strong supporting cast and familiarity with the teammates around him will give Mayfield the opportunity for continued success.

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