With the first overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, the Cleveland Browns selected quarterback Baker Mayfield out of Oklahoma, in hopes that he can be the bright light the organization needs to lead them out of the hole they've dug themselves into.
Mayfield was obviously a standout performer in his collegiate years on the gridiron; winning the 2017 Heisman Trophy, The Maxwell Award, The Walter Camp Award, The Davey O'Brien Award, and the Associated Press Play Of The Year award - all in the same year.
In his three seasons playing for Oklahoma, Mayfield surpassed 3,600 yards each year along with over 35 touchdowns each season as well.
His senior season saw him pass for 4,340 yards to go with 41 touchdowns, only throwing five interceptions all season.
Mayfield's senior season pass percentage was a 70.5 and he held a quarterback rating of 198.9.
Cleveland made a great selection in taking the Oklahoma product to lead their team for the foreseeable future. One thing we see a lot with standout College Football quarterbacks, however, is they seem to lose their way in the NFL.
Whether it's a drop off in play or personal self-destruction after coming into a ton of money, some first round picks just don't pan out for whatever reason.
Former NFL quarterback Chad Pennington, a New York Jets first round-pick from 2000, has some advice for Mayfield in regards to this.
Pennington, who met Mayfield at the Senior Bowl and has exchanged texts with him ever since, had some brilliant advise for the rookie signal-caller as he approaches his first NFL season (quotes via Sporting News):
“My first piece of advice came from a place of transparency and honesty in saying that, ‘Baker, you have to remember who you are, and that is a guy who was a twice walk-on in college, and without your work ethic and your talent, you would probably be a [graduate assistant] somewhere coaching,’" Pennington told the Beacon Journal/Ohio.com.
“The conflict is now people are treating him differently than who he knows he really is.
"And so he has to be able to distinguish the difference between [the two and tell himself], ‘This is who people think I am and want to treat me this way because I am the first pick, I am a Heisman Trophy winner, but I, as Baker Mayfield, have to remember that I’m a twice walk-on, and I have to keep that edge about me, or this game and the entertainment value around this game will eat a player up and spit him out.'"
“I love the fact that [Mayfield], in his mind, is competing for the job. That’s how you want his mindset to be," Pennington said.
"You just want him to be able to handle it if he doesn’t win the job to make sure that he does everything in the quarterback room to help that room be successful."
What are your thoughts on the advise Pennington has for Mayfield? Do you think that Mayfield will have a successful career with the Browns? And do you think Mayfield will be starting for Cleveland when the season opens? Let us know your thoughts on the matter in the comments section below!
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