It looks like Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield took his offseason preparation seriously.
The Cleveland Browns are gearing up for a major year in 2019, and one of the key components to success will be that of the continued progression of quarterback Baker Mayfield. Mayfield had a huge rookie season in 2018 that got people hyped for the next season. Yet, 2019 wasn’t the breakout year everyone was hoping. Mayfield struggled a bit, in part due to a bad offensive line, injured wide receivers, and talent on the offensive side of the ball that were issues in the locker room.
Needless to say, his second season campaign wasn’t good. Among all of the issues were Mayfield‘s conditioning, which some thought to be a problem. It never appeared to be one as the season carried on. That doesn’t mean it wasn’t, however. If he wasn’t working out that hard in the offseason, one could ask how much he spent dedicating time to film studies and such. Which would be a fair point of contention.
The summer of 2020 is a different story entirely. While ill-advised, he had a meet-up with receivers and tight ends to work on timing and route running in the spring. He’s also been uncharacteristically quiet this offseason, save for some run-of-the-mill interviews to hype the season. All of that seemed to suggest that Mayfield had really buckled down this year, but now we have proof that Mayfield has in fact gotten his act together.
In a recent photo, post-workout, we can see Mayfield has lost a considerable amount of weight and looks to be in the best shape of his career. That weight loss should help Mayfield on the field be more mobile, and allow for him to be able to scramble better if the pocket falls apart. It’s also a sign that he took this season seriously and dedicated himself to improving his game.
It’s safe to say that it probably transferred over to learning Kevin Stefanski’s playbook as well, though there’s no real tangible proof to that. It’s more a hunch, a viable hunch but a hunch nonetheless.
Mayfield should go into 2020 as the odds on favorite to be the most improved quarterback of the year, and with a simple, yet high powered offense ready to let loose, Mayfield should be looking at huge numbers this season.