Here are the best quotes and highlights from the first Baker Mayfield press conference of his Tampa Bay Buccaneers career.
Baker Mayfield is officially a Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback.
The team introduced him on Monday, giving fans the first Baker Mayfield press conference of the year and a glimpse at who the Bucs quarterback next season might be.
Mayfield still needs to win the job in training camp, but he’ll likely begin the summer as the team’s QB1. From there it’ll be a competition between him and Kyle Trask, a battle that will hopefully prove to be informative in terms of how the team proceeds with its plan to find a quarterback of the future.
Could it be Trask? Might it be Mayfield? Does this whole thing end with Caleb Williams starting in 2024?
The future remains uncertain, but the ride there seems like it’s going to be a lot of fun. Baker spoke with the Bucs media on Monday and sounded like a guy playing with house money — which he essentially is, as is the team — which sets the stage for a season that will certainly be something when all is said and done.
As far as what’s been said already, here’s everything Mayfield said in his first press conference as a Buccaneers quarterback.
Baker Mayfield press conference highlights (Updated)
Baker Mayfield on replacing Tom Brady in Tampa Bay
“Listen, I’m never going to be Tom Brady. There’s a reason he’s won so many Super Bowls, he’s the greatest of all-time,” Mayfield said. “I’m not going to try and be Tom, I’m going to be me. That’s what has gotten me to this point. We’re going to do it differently but that’s what makes this league so special, everybody puts their own touch on it.”
“It’s an honor to follow up somebody like [Tom Brady] and people who played with him around here, I’m going to pick their brains on things he did,” Mayfield said. “Following a guy like that is special.”
Why did Baker Mayfield decide to sign with the Buccaneers?
Perhaps his best — and most eyebrow-raising — answer came when he was asked the biggest question of the offseason: why did he decide to sign with the Bucs?
“I wanted to go someplace where we can win right away,” Mayfield said. “This is that place.”
That’s bold as hell and is exactly the type of thing fans who are uneasy about what the future looks like want to hear.
On playing with Mike Evans and Chris Godwin
“Anytime you get to play with playmakers like that, obviously it makes your job easier. They’re so experienced, and they’ve seen a lot as well so I’m excited to get the opportunity to play with them,” Mayfield said.
It wasn’t just Evans and Godwin who got a shoutout from Mayfield, as he made sure to mention Russell Gage as well.
“Obviously [Russell Gage] sticking around was a big decision for him, so I’m just eager to get to know those guys and work together,” Mayfield said.
Making sure to shout out Gage in addition to his more obvious receiving targets is a pretty good first step toward building some relationships in the Bucs locker room and shows Mayfield has done his homework.
Baker Mayfield speaks about his past experiences with teams
He didn’t dive super deep into things, but it sounds like he took a shot at both himself and some of the situations he’s been in thus far in his career.
“It was important for me to be in a place that’s stable, and knows how to win and do it properly,” Mayfield said. “I’ve gotten to see things in my journey, it’s not exactly how I drew it up but it’s helped along the way and especially to make a decision like this.”
It doesn’t sound like Baker Mayfield expects a long stay in Tampa Bay
This will be a quote that might get interpreted the wrong way, but it’s actually a good thing for the Bucs. Mayfield mentioned that he’s building his resume, which implies he’s using his stop in Tampa Bay to bolster his future prospects.
This is in line with what the Bucs plans are too, as the team is almost certainly going to draft a quarterback of the future either this year or next year, making Mayfield merely a bridge. It’s a mutually beneficial relationship, though, one that could even end with Baker ending up in Tampa Bay long-term as the team’s future quarterback if the stars align.
Baker Mayfield refused to say his journey thus far has humbled him
This isn’t exactly what fans might want to hear, as it suggests Mayfield hasn’t totally learned from his previous mistakes. Where he lacks some awareness, Baker certainly hasn’t lost any of his confidence.
But Baker Mayfield did own some of his past mistakes that led him to Tampa Bay
Despite not completely putting his hand up and admitting that he’s failed in his career, Mayfield didn’t totally buzz past accountability. He made sure to note that even though he hasn’t been humbled, he knows that he hasn’t yet played the best football of his career.
That’s a little better than the first part of his answer.
Baker Mayfield isn’t going to apologize for who he is
Continuing the thread of Baker showing his ego hasn’t lost anything off its fastball, he told the media that he knows his personality rubs some folks the wrong way but isn’t planning on changing that anytime soon.
That might come across as a little arrogant, but the Buccaneers have been a grey slate in terms of character over much of its history and might do well to have a shot of personality like this.
Baker Mayfield Bucs contract details
Here’s the official breakdown of Baker Mayfield’s contract with the Bucs.
- Base Salary: $2 million
- Bonus: $2 million
- Incentives: $4.5 million
It’s pretty hard to overstate what an amazing deal that is for the Buccaneers. Mayfield wasn’t going to command a huge salary based on how the last few years of his career have gone, but the team could end up paying him less than $5 million for a priceless amount of clarity at the quarterback position moving forward.
For all that has been made about the Bucs quarterback situation, it’s not terribly complicated. Kyle Trask is the guy or he’s not, and everything else goes from there. If Mayfield beats him out in training camp, that essentially tells Tampa Bay all it needs to know about Trask and they can move on. If Mayfield loses out, then the question still remains as to whether Trask can hold it together and develop, but it’s a step in the right direction nonetheless.
The Bucs are on the hook for $4 million and not a cent more if things don’t go well with Mayfield. There’s another $4.5 million attached to his deal but it’s tied up in incentives, which means if he doesn’t ball out and turn the team into a winner this year he’s not going to see the full amount advertised.
It’s a win-win deal if there ever was one.