The shoulder issues have plagued Baker Mayfield all season in what has been a frustrating campaign for the Cleveland Browns. With the Browns officially eliminated from the postseason, Mayfield announced after Monday’s loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers he will be getting surgery to repair the torn labrum in his non-throwing shoulder. On Monday, coach Kevin Stefanski announced that Mayfield will not play in the regular-season finale, which does open up an earlier window to go under the knife if he so chooses.
This year has been a disaster for Mayfield, who injured the shoulder in Week 2 and aggravated it a month later. Mayfield has completed 60.5% of his passes for 3,010 yards, 17 touchdowns, and 13 interceptions (83.1 passer rating). Of 32 qualified quarterbacks, Mayfield is 28th in completion percentage, tied for 20th in touchdown passes, 17th in yards per attempt (7.2), and 27th in quarterback rating.
The Browns are 7-9 and sitting in last place in the AFC North, partly because of the struggles of Mayfield, who has thrown the most interceptions in the NFL since the start of the 2018 season (his rookie year). Even though Mayfield’s play has brought into question his future with the Browns as the franchise quarterback, he isn’t concerned about any of that.
Mayfield was sacked nine times in the loss to the Steelers. Bad shoulder and all, he wasn’t giving up.
“I’m a fighter. If anybody ever questions how much I want it, just turn on this tape,” Mayfield said. “It wasn’t pretty but I kept going, I kept swinging. That’s who I am and that’s who I’ll continue to be. That’s how I’ve always been. So, I don’t really know how to adjust it.”
Even though Mayfield has endured a fighter mentality, the 12 rounds he’s battled all season have taken a lot out of him. He’s given it all for the Browns regardless of his performance, yet the injures are taking a toll.
“When there’s an opportunity to win, I’m an extremely competitive guy. But I think it’s time for me to start looking for what’s in the best interest for me and my health,” Mayfield said. “I’ve continued to lay it out on the line, and I haven’t been healthy and try to fight for our guys. And right now, I’m pretty damn beat up, to be honest with you. There’s no way around it. I gave it everything I had tonight.”