If Baker Mayfield wound up on the Steelers, for Browns fans that would be the darkest timeline. ProFootballTalk released an article this morning detailing the possible arrival of Baker Mayfield in Pittsburgh. While Pittsburgh signed our guy Mitch Trubiskey to a 2-year deal, that doesn’t rule out Mayfield. Signing Baker would mean the Steelers have less of a road to travel towards mediocrity. It appears the Browns aren’t going to get what they want in a trade as the price tag is a little hefty.
It recently was reported that the Browns don’t want a first-round pick for Mayfield. Hopefully, they don’t want a second or a third or a fourth, either. With few if any teams clamoring for the No. 1 overall pick in the 2018 draft, the Browns may have to accept a low-round pick at best in order to dump his salary.
At some point, the Browns may actually have to attach a low-round pick in order to move on from Mayfield and most if not all of his contract. (The Browns may have to pay a large chunk of the $18.8 million to make it happen.)
Everyone knows the Browns are done with Mayfield. And the one place he wanted to go — the Colts — didn’t want him. Even if, say, the Seahawks or the Lions or the Falcon express interest, Mayfield could make it clear he’s not interested in playing for any of those teams.
He has a hammer in this situation. He’s making $18.8 million, no matter what. He could force the Browns to ultimately release him if he makes it clear that he ultimately will refuse to embrace a new team.
The Browns surely don’t want to do that. For starters, he’d make a beeline for Pittsburgh, which would pay him a one-year minimum salary of $1.035 million and stick the Browns with the $17.765 million balance. Instantly, he’d become the best option on the Steelers’ depth chart.
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