Here’s What To Expect From Baker Mayfield With Panthers In 2022

Baker Mayfield, Panthers
NFL Analysis Network

The Carolina Panthers have been on the search for a new starting quarterback the last few seasons. Last year, they acquired Sam Darnold from the New York Jets and were hopeful that they had found their quarterback of the future.

Unfortunately, that was not the case. Darnold regressed after a good start to the 2021 campaign, sending the Panthers to the drawing board again. They came out with another member of the 2018 NFL Draft class, this time acquiring No. 1 overall pick, Baker Mayfield, from the Cleveland Browns.

Mayfield’s time with the Browns came to an end unceremoniously as they acquired Deshaun Watson from the Houston Texans. That left Mayfield winding in the wind for months as teams had already addressed their quarterback needs earlier in the offseason.

Carolina was likely the best landing spot left for Mayfield, who will have a chance to compete for the starting job there. He is starting a little bit behind the eight ball since Darnold does have a season’s worth of experience learning the playbook and schemes, but Mayfield will be given every chance to start.

The team is likely hoping that he wins the starting job as they have already seen what to expect from Darnold. Mayfield has performed at a higher level previously in their careers, with the 2020 season being his peak.

If Mayfield can replicate that success, the Panthers could be a surprise playoff contender in 2021. Over at Sports Illustrated, they believe that Mayfield is in for arguably the best season of his career.

They are projecting him to complete 65 percent of his passes and throw for 4,007 yards with 27 touchdowns and 14 interceptions. The completion percentage and yardage would be career bests, while the touchdowns would tie a career-high.

Mayfield is also projected to run the ball a little bit more in 2022. Sports Illustrated has him rushing for 206 yards and two touchdowns; the yardage would be a new career high for him as well.

Should he win the starting job over Darnold, Mayfield is set up to succeed in Carolina. They have a strong run game led by Christian McCaffrey and good weapons at wide receiver in D.J. Moore and Robbie Anderson. A bounce-back season is certainly attainable as Mayfield’s standing as a starter in the league is hanging in the balance this season.