Skip to main content

Training Camp

Baker Mayfield making strides thanks to an open mind, willingness to learn 

If the game is slowing down for Baker Mayfield, it's starting to show.

It's something that's been evident since the Browns opened training camp as Cleveland's rookie quarterback appears more comfortable with each passing practice. 

On Sunday, he put together perhaps his best session since the team tabbed him to be their quarterback-of-the-future. But right now, the Browns just want him to be an eager and willing pupil. 

"Baker Mayfield has been everything I thought a quarterback should be for our organization thus far," head coach Hue Jackson said. "He's doing the things that we want him to do, the way we want him to do it, and he's exceeding those things. I think his thing is, 'You guys tell me what you need me to do, and I'm going to do it.' That is what he has done ever since he has walked through the building, and to me that is exciting."

What's just as encouraging, Jackson said, is the youngster's hunger to learn. Mayfield, a former walk-on-turned-No. 1 overall pick in the NFL Draft, came to Berea with neither an ego nor sense of entitlement, taking tips from veterans Tyrod Taylor and Drew Stanton. That approach has precipitated growth both on and off the field. 

"That is a player who is eager to learn and grow, but more than that I think he has built an unbelievable bond with Tyrod Taylor, Drew Stanton and that quarterback group. I think that is where it starts, there is trust, I think there is honesty, and transparency among that group," Jackson said. 

"They've done a great job, and when you're the first pick of the draft, normally when some guys walk in with their chest out, it's about me-me me. He's not about that, he's about the team. He's truly about the football team getting better, and that's why I am glad he is here."

Presented with those kind words from the head coach, Mayfield, true to form, shrugged it all off. The former Heisman Trophy winner knows he's made strides in recent months, but this journey is a long one. 

"That's exciting to hear," he said, "but that doesn't mean I'm satisfied. I always say that I set my own expectations and standards, and I have to live up to that. I'm not done working." 

Mayfield said he's learned the value of consistency from Taylor and Stanton, who joined the team's roster this past spring. He's also built chemistry with his offensive teammates since coming to Cleveland. 

"I just think that he understands his teammates better. He knows where to place the ball to make a play. He threw a ball behind the ear to someone today, and to me it was outstanding," Jackson said. 

"Those are the kinds of things that he's doing. Along with staying in the pocket, I think that he's seeing the offense unfold a little bit better, because I think that he understands the system better. I think that he's making really good progress, which is what you want to see from your quarterback."

Mayfield said now is hardly the time to rest.

"We're going into Day 5 of practice, so I'm still working," he said. "I have a lot of progress to make, so if I can get a little bit better each day, then I am doing something right."

Related Content