NFL Preseason Week 1: Baker Mayfield shines, but is there even a QB competition in Cleveland?
The NFL preseason got going in earnest on Thursday night with a full slate of games and several key debuts were made, including Baker Mayfield with the Browns, Saquon Barkley with the Giants and Lamar Jackson with the Ravens. Some other players never saw the field, including franchise quarterbacks like Tom Brady and Drew Brees.
Naturally, the preseason means that everything seen on the field must be taken with a grain of salt. Barkley won’t always average over 8.5 yards per carry, for example. A lot of players are going up against second or third team defenses, and the defensive schemes they’re running are relatively vanilla. With that being said, Baker Mayfield vs. Tyrod Taylor in Cleveland could end up being fun. Taylor went 5 for 5 passing with 99 yards and a touchdown, while Mayfield ended up 11 for 20 for 212 yards and two touchdowns.
On Friday’s “Off the Bench” podcast, Danny Kanell and Raja Bell broke down the slate of preseason games — with the caveat that you can’t read too much into Week 1 of the preseason. They looked at how seriously we should take Mayfield vs. Taylor, Andrew Luck’s future with the Colts, and the Patriots choosing to keep Brady on the bench.