The quarterback situation for Cleveland Browns should not be impacted by the new deal for Dak in Dallas.
Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott finally got paid and deservedly so. Prescott received a four-year $160 million deal which finally ends the will he stay or go saga in Dallas. Meanwhile in Cleveland, the conversation now shifts to how the Browns are going to deal with their own quarterback Baker Mayfield. While some are trying to connect the dots between the two quarterbacks, the situation between Dallas and Dak is not similar to Baker and the Browns.
First off, Baker Mayfield is still on his rookie deal and the team more than likely will pick up his fifth-year option. The Browns do not have entertain contract extension conversations at this time and nor should they. Secondly, Prescott is a more accomplished and consistent quarterback than Mayfield has been up to this point. More is known about what kind of quarterback Prescott is than Mayfield. There will be a much clearer picture of exactly what Mayfield is after next season than what is known now.
The next item to discuss is the dollar figure. Many were quick to rush out with knee-jerk reactions suggesting that the Browns should lock up Baker Mayfield now for the sake of perceived savings. Well, that may not be the best idea. Contrary to what Andrew Berry said last week, there were two cautionary tales in similar situations that got premature contract extensions who were traded this offseason, Carson Wentz and Jared Goff. Both Los Angeles and Philadelphia thought they had their guy only to end up trading their once believed to be franchise quarterbacks because they turned out not to be. Based on what we know, there is a very good chance a premature extension with Mayfield ends up like the Rams and Eagles with the Browns being left holding the bag, a situation that nobody wants.
There is one thing that everyone knows about Baker Mayfield. The level of play seen last season is more of a product of Kevin Stefanski putting together a great game plan rather than Mayfield’s raw ability. Stefanski catered to his strengths and limited situations that were detrimental to his ability as much as he could. There was still inconsistency over the course of the season and some pretty ugly games, but overall Mayfield’s improved play is a direct result of an offense that was best suited for him.
So here is what it comes down to. Does the new deal for Dak Prescott impact Baker Mayfield at all? It doesn’t. Well, at least it shouldn’t at this time. There is just not enough known about what Mayfield is to back up the Brinks truck. The best play is to wait at least until the conclusion of the 2021 NFL season to think about contract discussions. If the Browns have to pay more after 2021 so be it, that would mean they definitively have their long-term option at quarterback.