Baker Mayfield: I’m not going out to try to prove I’m not Johnny
Baker Mayfield has grown tired of the Johnny Manziel comparisons already. But if he wanted to distance himself from Johnny Football, Mayfield went to the wrong place. Mayfield is in Cleveland because Manziel failed in Cleveland.
Two years, eight starts, two wins and open wounds are all that is left of the Manziel era.
Mayfield gets a chance to correct repeated mistakes by the Browns in drafting quarterbacks. He becomes the fifth the team has drafted in the first round since 1999.
“For me, I’m here right now because I have been myself,’' Mayfield said on a conference call with Browns’ reporters, via quotes distributed by the team. “Johnny and I are two completely different people. That is nothing against him, but what I have been able to do is be able to be up front and honest about who I am during these meetings. I’m confident that I have shown that with this coaching staff and with the management and throughout the process. For me, moving forward, it is just being myself. I am not going to go out and try to prove that I am not Johnny. I am going to be myself. To me, that is going to take care of the rest.”
General Manager John Dorsey wasn’t in Cleveland when the Browns drafted Manziel, but he repeatedly has defended Mayfield’s character and downplayed comparisons between the two Heisman Trophy winners.
“You guys are going to try to create. . . .,” Dorsey said. “Here is how I look at this: In doing all of our research on Baker Mayfield, he is an individual who as earned it all the way through his life. As I look at this thing, whatever he has done from high school to college and now here, he’s earning. He has really worked his way up here.
“The one thing I really love is when you talk to the Oklahoma staff, when he gets to Oklahoma, he begins to learn the playbook in three days. He loves the game of football. He loves to study the game of football. I have no qualms about this man whatsoever, as a man or as a football player. I think he is a really good person.”