Todd Bowles doesn’t sound very happy about Baker Mayfield mistakes at Bucs camp

Practice got a little sloppy this weekend, and Todd Bowles didn’t hold back in calling out the mistakes he saw.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers Offseason Workout
Tampa Bay Buccaneers Offseason Workout / Julio Aguilar/GettyImages

As the Tampa Bay Buccaneers approach their first preseason game, the quarterback battle between Baker Mayfield and Kyle Trask is getting tighter than anyone anticipated.

Mayfield appears to still have a slight edge based on experience, but everything that’s coming out of Bucs camp about Trask suggests that he’s taken enough of a leap forward to at least feasibly challenge his veteran teammate.

Experience aside, it’s a neck-and-neck battle that doesn’t appear to have a clear front runner.

With the competition so close, the margin for error is slim. Trask has been mostly flawless while Mayfield has been less than impressive. Mistakes, and who is making them, has come to define the early stages of the battle and right now Mayfield isn’t doing himself any favors which is starting to get noticed by the man in charge of making a final call on the matter.

Todd Bowles calls out fumbling issues with Baker Mayfield and Nick Leverett

This weekend saw a slew of sloppy practices by the Bucs, specifically when Bake Mayfield was involved with the offense. On back-to-back plays, Mayfield fumbled a snap from center Nick Leverett which drew the ire of head coach Todd Bowles.

After the mistakes, Bowles called out the center-quarterback exchange issues and made it clear he wasn’t happy about what he was seeing. It also sounds like he’s not going to bend over backward to shield Mayfield from potential blame.

“The quarterback-center can’t have fumbles, regardless of what I saw,” Bowles said. “I’ll figure it out when I see the film – whose fault it was – but the ball can’t be on the ground.”

Bowles isn’t solely calling Mayfield out for the mistakes, but it’s the fact that the errors are happening that matters. Whether or not they were actually Mayfield’s fault might be beside the point as well, since any mistake feels amplified considering how precious each practice rep is in making the case for who should win the starting role.

Mayfield isn’t going to win or lose the starting job based on those two fumbles, but the thing to watch is if they’re part of a larger pattern. It still feels like Trask has a ways to go before we start seriously considering him as the team’s starting quarterback, but Mayfield is seemingly squandering early opportunities to build himself a lead.