2020-05-09

Hue Jackson: Some in Browns organization didn't want Mayfield as starter or backup

Baker Mayfield thought as a third-stringer?

Cleveland Browns invested the first-overall pick in 2018 National Football League draft months after Mayfield won the Heisman Trophy.

While inside the organization, according to Hue Jackson, the then-head coach of the Browns, some didn’t want Mayfield as starter nor backup.

“People don’t know [this, but] there was a people that at one time didn’t want Baker to be the backup, ” Jackson said on The Zach Gelb Show, via Radio.com.

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Team manager John Dorsey, Jackson signed free agent quarterback Tyrod Taylor in the offseason after he parted ways with Buffalo Bills.

They would open training camp with four quarterbacks –  Taylor, Mayfield, Drew Stanton, Brogan Roback.

Taylor earned the nod over Mayfield to start week one against Pittsburgh Steelers, Jackson would name Mayfield the backup ahead of Stanton, as seen on HBO's Hard Knock series.

 “I made that decision that Baker Mayfield was going to be the backup quarterback because I could see him emerging in practice and getting better [with] each and every opportunity.

“No way was I going to have him not dressed as the No. 3 quarterback, which, that’s what he would have been doing. There’s no way. I made sure that this young man was the backup quarterback for our football team,” Jackson said, via Radio.com.

Mayfield would ultimately lead Cleveland to their first victory in two years after a mid-game injury occurred to Taylor against New York Jets (21-17) in week three.

The organization later dismissed Jackson midseason after 2-5 start; assistant Freddie Kitchens would fill the vacancy in the offseason.

However, Kitchens, too, would be fired after a disappointing (6-10) season, where the Mayfield-led offense struggled under the rookie coach.

Jackson says he still believes in the 25-year-old he drafted despite a disappointing season.

“Obviously last year is behind them. I think he’ll work his tail off, and I’m sure the coaching staff will do everything they can to put the right offense and the right pieces around him to give him a chance to be successful,” Jackson added, via Radio.com.

Kevin Stefanski will be Mayfield's third head coach in three seasons.


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