There were talks about Mayfield heading to the Carolina Panthers right before the draft, but the two parties could not come to an agreement — reportedly because of money.
Mayfield is currently guaranteed $18.8 million from the Browns, and the Panthers wanted them around $13-14 million of that, according to Jonathan M. Alexander of the The Charlotte Observer. That number ended up being too much for Cleveland.
It is unsure how much the Browns are willing to pay to get rid of Mayfield, or what combination of salary and picks they were willing to negotiate.
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The Panthers were looking to spend $5-6 million on the 27-year-old quarterback, but without an agreement from the Browns, Matt Rhule’s team went in another direction by selecting Ole Miss’ Matt Corral with the No. 94 overall pick. He joins veterans Sam Darnold and P.J. Walker, as well as undrafted rookie Davis Cheek, on the roster.
Despite having four signal-callers, the Panthers may not be done adding to the position, as general manager Scott Fitterer saying they could still be in the market for someone.
“I would say quarterback or any other position, if there’s someone out there that we think can help us, we’ll keep our minds open,” Fitterer told Pro Football Talk after the draft. “We have the money set aside to make several different moves and that was important for us to do. We want that flexibility, but if someone can help us, regardless of position, we’ll make a move at some point.”
As for the Browns, Mayfield might be needed, but doesn’t want to stay. This offseason, the team traded for former Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson, who faces a possible suspension after sexual assault accusations.