Baker Mayfield NFL Draft

Why teams should think twice about drafting Baker Mayfield

The NFL playoffs begin this weekend. However, the majority of NFL fans are now focused on the NFL draft.

This draft is loaded with quarterback prospects. Some of the top talent includes Sam Darnold, Josh Rosen and Josh Allen.

There has also been a lot of NFL talk about Heisman Trophy winner Baker Mayfield. Some people think he can be successful in the NFL. Others see him as a bust.

There are plenty of reasons to avoid drafting Mayfield, at least early on. Here is a list reasons why NFL teams should think twice before taking a chance on the former Oklahoma Sooner quarterback.

The Big 12 Conference

NFL quarterbacks come from all over the country. Case Keenum went to Houston. Carson Wentz went to North Dakota State. Ben Roethlisberger went to Miami, OH.

Don’t forget about the big schools either. Tom Brady went to Michigan. Aaron Rodgers went to California. Matthew Stafford went to Georgia.

Mayfield joins a nice list of dominating Oklahoma quarterbacks. Jason White and Sam Bradford also won Heismans during their time with the Sooners. But there is something disturbing about the quarterbacks the Big 12 has been putting in the NFL.

Mayfield joins the list of dominant Big 12 quarterbacks. (Photo by Associated Press)

Since 2000, 22 Big 12 quarterbacks have been drafted. None of them have panned out as dependable starting quarterbacks. The most notable names to come from the Big 12 include Chris Simms, Vince Young, Josh Freeman, Sam Bradord, Colt McCoy, Blaine Gabbert, Robert Griffin III, Ryan Tannehill, Brandon Weeden and Geno Smith.

Some of these guys showed promise early on, but none of them panned out. Simms never started more than 10 games in a season and only played five seasons in the NFL. Young started off nice by bringing the Titans to the postseason a couple times, but ended up busting as well. The Dolphins have only finished over .500 once under Tannehill. Griffin’s knees didn’t survive. Bradford has also spent plenty of time on the sidelines due to injury. Yes, a few of these guys started off nice, but didn’t end well.

Some of these guys put up big numbers in college and even stayed healthy in the NFL. They just were ineffective in the pros. Smith, Weeden, Freeman, McCoy and Gabbert all failed to deliver.

There was no primary starting quarterback from the Big 12 this season. Why does the conference struggle to put out big-time NFL quarterbacks?

The Big 12 style of play is all run and gun. The Big 12 is known for their high scoring games with almost no defense. Oklahoma has had conference wins that ended with scores like 49-41 over Baylor, 42-35 over Kansas State, 62-52 over Oklahoma State and 59-31 over West Virginia.

Oklahoma State was the Big 12’s second best offense and put up scores like 41-34 over Texas Tech, 50-39 over West Virginia and 49-42 over Iowa State. They are scoring a lot of points, but they are also giving up a bunch.

The Big 12’s quarterbacks have inflated stats. You can’t take them seriously because they aren’t playing against any defenses. It may not be fair to say an NFL quarterback can never come from the Big 12, but it’s not that ridiculous of a statement. Times change and quarterbacks can come from even the smallest of conferences. With the Big 12’s current style of play, don’t expect any star quarterback coming from the conference anytime soon.

Size and attitude

One of the bigger knocks on Mayfield is his size. ESPN lists him at 6-foot-1, 220 pounds. Scouts and fans always like a big quarterback.

Yes, there are smaller quarterbacks that start in the NFL. That list includes Drew Brees, Russell Wilson and Tyrod Taylor. There have been smaller quarterbacks in the past that have also succeeded. Don’t rule out a guy just because of size.

Baker Mayfield NFL Draft

Mayfield has issued a few apologies this season after receiving criticism for his antics on the field. (Photo by Getty Images)

The thing about Mayfield is that he reminds people more of Johnny Manziel than Drew Brees. Both Manziel and Mayfield won Heisman Trophies, completed around 70 percent of their passes, were athletic and mobile and made fans hate them with their antics on the field.

Mayfield has already received criticism for talking trash with his opponents, grabbing his crotch and planting an Oklahoma flag on Ohio State’s logo. Manziel received criticism for things mostly off the field like partying, gambling and not working hard.

Do NFL teams want a quarterback that has been labeled as a punk by some? If you look at the NFL’s current starting quarterbacks, none of them have an attitude like Mayfield. The closest guys you could argue would be Cam Newton and Jay Cutler.

Newton has been criticized for a poor attitude before, but not many would call him a punk. The same goes for Cutler. He is known more for whining than anything else.

Mayfield’s personality does not fit the NFL quarterback mold. It is something teams should consider before drafting him.

Final verdict

Former Heisman Trophy winner and Oklahoma Sooner Jason White, along with Chase Daniel from Missouri and Graham Harrell from Texas Tech are notable Big 12 quarterbacks this century to go undrafted. Mayfield probably won’t go undrafted, but teams should proceed with caution.

Taking Mayfield in the first round is risky. Teams interested in Mayfield should wait until the middle rounds to take him. No team should sweat over another team taking Mayfield in the first round. Waiting gives teams more of a low risk high reward.

 

Featured image by Getty Images

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Week 2 NFL Picks Against the Spread

I am back with my second week of NFL picks against the spread. I was not great last week. I was just 6-9-1. I hit on a few outright upsets, and missed some others. I was handed a tie when the Giants were made a one point favorite just before kickoff in Dallas. The game had been a pick ‘em. The crazy thing is 6-9-1 won my weekly pool. Again, the spreads I use are from rtsports.com. My picks are in bold and outright upsets have an asterisk next to them. The minus sign denotes the favorite. Let’s see how I do in week two. I was all over Buffalo Thursday. So, I am already 0-1.

Ravens (-7) at Browns- RGIII’s injury was a massive gut punch to the Browns, as if they needed another one. Despite what the “experts” and fans are saying now, they had a shot to at least be competitive with him. Josh McCown is what he is, a career journeyman who needs a perfect situation to succeed, this isn’t it. The Ravens have not found their sea legs yet, but I still really like them. They are catching Cleveland at a great time. Bal 20 Cle 9

Bengals* at Steelers (-3) – I am setting the over under for ejections at three. I am still not buying the Steelers’ defense, mainly the secondary. Also, this is not the Redskins. Big Ben and his supporting cast are not putting up 38 points on this defense. I was really impressed with Cincy last week. They made a ton of mistakes and still beat a decent opponent on the road. The Steelers were flawless Monday. Look for them to start making a few mistakes and the Bengals to clean up theirs. Cin 24 Pit 20

Chiefs* at Texans (-2.5) – This line is a classic overreaction from opening week. Am I really supposed to believe that Brock Osweiler makes Houston so much better that they can now beat a team that beat them by 30 in a playoff game in January? Well I don’t. KC 27 Hou 16

Cowboys* at Redskins (-2.5) – Dak Prescott gave the Cowboys a chance to win last week. He made some really nice in game adjustments. The rest of the team could not close the deal. I think Dez Bryant rebounds from a lackluster opener and makes a big late against a Redskins secondary that was torched last week. Dal 23 Was 20

Dolphins at Patriots (-6.5) – Dolphins fans should punch whoever decided that their team would open against Seattle and New England back to back. Another home divisional game another route for the Pats, even without Tom Brady. NE 31 Mia 13

Saints at Giants (-4.5) – The scoreboard may burn out in this one. These kind of games seem to come down to field goals by whoever has the ball last. We have two fantastic offenses and God awful defenses. The Giants will make what may be literally the only stop in this game. NYG 41 NO 38

49ers at Panthers (-13.5) – This is just too many points in the NFL. The 49ers showed that they may have more punch on offense than we all thought Monday night. Quarterback Blaine Gabbert has never looked better. Due to his injuries, I forgot how effective running back Carlos Hyde can be. Despite all that Cam Newton and company have much more horsepower and will be anxious to rebound from a mistake filled opening night loss. Car 21 SF 13

Titans at Lions (-5.5) – Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford looked rejuvenated last week under new offensive coordinator Jim Bob Cooter. Okay, maybe I was just looking for a way to work that name in there, but it is the truth. Tennessee is running too much options stuff with Marcus Mariota. Given his mobility, I understand it. However, is caused too many turnovers last year and a pair of game changers last week. Det 34 Ten 21

Falcons* at Raiders (-4.5) – Atl 27 Oak 24- What a great comeback win for Oakland last week. However, the 141 penalty yards mean there are still the Raiders. They need to clean that up before I start putting faith in them. Atlanta’s comeback fell just short last week, but I expect their strong finish to carry over into this one. Atl 28 Oak 24

Seahawks (-7) at Rams- Most sites have taken this game off the board due to questions about Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson’s ankle. This was the only line I could find. Considering the Rams barely crossed the 50 in San Francisco Monday night, Seattle is the likely the last opponent embattled head coach Jeff Fisher wants to see right now. No matter who is playing quarterback for Seattle, the Rams offense will continue to struggle in a big way. Sea 17 LA 6.

Bucs at Cardinals (-6.5) – The half point is key here from a betting perspective. I really like both teams this year, even with Arizona’s Sunday night stumble against New England’s preseason all-star squad. They will be just desperate enough to avoid a 0-2 start, but Jameis Winston will make them sweat. The Bucs are a feisty bunch. Ari 26 TB 20

Colts at Broncos (-6) – I told anyone who would listen that Denver would win a lot of games with a run game defense this year. The opening night game was a perfect showcase of that. Trevor Siemian can make all the throws this offense requires of him. Andrew Luck and the Colts have been a tough matchup for Denver in recent years, but a slow start doomed them last week at home. This week, the competition steps up in a big way and they are on the road. A slow start may make this game ugly. Den 24 Ind 12.

Jaguars* at Chargers (-3) – This line is strange. Jacksonville played Green Bay right to the wire last week. This was enough to get me to buy into them. Meanwhile, the Chargers suffered the kind of loss that can ruin a season before it even gets going, blowing a three score lead in Kansas City. Whatever faint hopes the Chargers had of surprising people this year died last week. Keep an eye the Jags and their young offense going forward. Jac 31 SD 24

Packers (-2) at Vikings- I think this is almost too good to be true. It makes me wonder what Vegas knows that I do not. The Vikings needed two defensive scores to get by the Titans last week. Assuming that does not happen again this week, all you have to do is look at the quarterback match-up. Aaron Rodgers vs. Sam Bradford and/or Shaun Hill. Enough said. GB 31 Min 17

MNF: Eagles at Bears (-3) – I was pleasantly surprised with Eagles rookie QB Carson Wentz last week. On the other hand, the Bears let me down last week, but the defense did show improvement. I will go with the theory that the Bears will keep getting better and the Eagles will come back down to earth a bit. Chi 21 Phi 14