Rebuilding NFC Squad Emerging Suitor for Browns QB Baker Mayfield

Baker Mayfield

Getty Images Baker Mayfield of the Cleveland Browns.

The Seattle Seahawks are expected to emerge as a suitor for displaced Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield once their offseason program wraps up this week.

The Seahawks are currently seeing what they have in veteran Geno Smith and Drew Lock, who came over in the trade that sent Russell Wilson to Denver. Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated believes the Seahawks could get more serious about making a trade for Mayfield once they get a feel for exactly what they have in Smith and Lock.

The Seahawks are another team that could emerge as a suitor, though they’ve been pretty focused on seeing what they can get from Geno Smith and Drew Lock. That said, once this week’s done, the team’s offseason program will be complete, and Pete Carroll and John Schneider will have a chance to reconvene on their quarterback plans with nine weeks of info to work off.

The Seahawks have been linked to Mayfield multiple times since Deshaun Watson landed in Cleveland, although there has been some debate on how interested Seattle is in making a deal. However, the low amount of interest around the league when it comes to Mayfield is based on his salary is $18.9 million. That being said, the Browns have been more willing to eat a large chunk of that, which could motivate a team like the Seahawks to get a deal done.

Geno Smith Leading QB Battle in Seattle

Under their current construction, it appears Smith has the edge in the Seahawks QB battle, which is interesting considering he did not do anything to impress last season when he started in place of an injured Wilson.

Smith — a second-round pick in the 2013 draft — went 1-2, he averaged only 26 pass attempts and 190 passing yards per game. Still, Seattle has maintained he’s the leader in the clubhouse for the starting gig.

“Geno’s still ahead, you can tell that, but it’s not going to be too much for Drew to be caught up,” coach Pete Carroll said during minicamp. “By the time we get through camp he’ll be there. He’s really bright. It makes sense to him. He’s really sharp in the huddle and at the line of scrimmage and all of that. So it’s just time that he needs, and there’s nothing we can do but gain some more of that.”

Earlier this offseason, Carroll was asked about the prospect of making a trade for another quarterback and the veteran skipper didn’t sound too enthralled by the idea.

“I don’t see us making a trade for anybody at all,” Carroll said May 5 on Sports Radio 93.3 KJR-FM in Seattle. “I don’t see that happening.”

Panthers Won’t Make ‘Bad’ Deal for Baker Mayfield

While the Seahawks are in a holding pattern when it comes to a Mayfield trade, the Panthers are ramping up their efforts to land the former top overall pick.

“As minicamps begin today for the Browns and Panthers, trade talks between the teams continue surrounding QB Baker Mayfield,” Jonathan Jones of CBS Sports reported on Tuesday. “The main issue remains Mayfield’s salary and how much (or how little) teams pay,” Jones tweeted. “There’s urgency on Carolina’s side to execute the deal soon so Mayfield can get some time in minicamp with the Panthers. For the Browns, it’s the best offer they have. Talks ongoing.”

Breer doesn’t see the Panthers making a “bad” deal for Mayfield, although he notes that Cleveland has been a motivated seller.

The Browns have been a motivated seller, showing a willingness already to take on a very significant percentage of Mayfield’s salary, so long as the draft-pick compensation is right (which would essentially equate to buying a draft pick for their former No. 1 pick). My sense is Cleveland will have to go further with the money to make the Panthers a willing buyer.

With offseason programs wrapping up this week around the league, Mayfield trade talks should heat up with teams getting a clearer picture of their quarterback situations.

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