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Baker Mayfield bets on himself, again

Mike Florio and Chris Simms examine how Baker Mayfield will fit in Tampa Bay, given the QB reportedly is signing a one-year deal, and assess what he’s capable of accomplishing at this point in his career.

It’s been a strange two years for Baker Mayfield.

After an unexpected playoff appearance, a wild-card win in Pittsburgh, and a close, tough loss to the Chiefs in the 2020 playoffs, the signs were pointing to Mayfield receiving a franchise-quarterback contract.

Now, the potential Tampa Bay starter is guaranteed low-level backup quarterback pay.

Mayfield’s contract has a $2 million guaranteed base salary, and a $2 million roster bonus due on the fifth day of the league year. That’s it for the base package.

He can make up to $4.5 million more based on playing time, regular-season playing time, and passing stats. The specific triggers have not yet been disclosed.

Last year, Mayfield made a major bet on himself, trading in a guaranteed $19.9 million base salary with the Browns for a much lower guaranteed payment. He’s making a bet for a second straight year, wagering on spending the 2023 season proving himself to be a starter in the NFL.

Either way, it’s a great deal for the Buccaneers. They get Mayfield for relative peanuts, as they transition away from Tom Brady. And if Mayfield plays well, he’ll get a lot more than $4 million in 2024.