It’s that time of year once again! Football Absurdity will bring you a breakdown of every notable fantasy football-relevant player throughout June, July, and August. Now that we’ve finished with the main bulk of the player profiles, it’s high time that we fill in around the edges with extra players that you need to know. Today, we take a look at the newest Carolina Panther, Baker Mayfield. The Panthers traded for him after the Browns decided to trade for a sexual predator rather than even try to repair the relationship with their erstwhile signal caller. Now in a quarterback “battle” with Sam Darnold, what can we expect from Baker Mayfield in Carolina? Will he #KeepPounding or #GetPoundedByTheDefense?
Baker Mayfield ADP and AAV:
Average Draft Position: QB27, 171 overall
Average Auction Value: $1.9
Baker Mayfield Statistics:
|Year||4 PPTD||6 PPTD||4 PPTD/G||6 PPTD/G||Year||Att||Yd||TD||YPC||Att/G||Yd/G|
2022 Baker Mayfield Overview:
If you’re in a 1QB league, you can just keep on scrolling. There’s nothing here for you when it comes to Baker Mayfield. Mayfield was highly inconsistent with the Browns and chances are he will be highly inconsistent with the Panthers, as well. The only change I can think of with the Panthers compared to the Browns is that the Panthers have a dedicated running back target who can do all the hard work in Christian McCaffrey.
But, if anyone joins a team with Sam Darnold and the team plays at a camp battle with Darnold, you can’t expect a ton of upside from him or job security. That makes a lot of sense, as Baker hasn’t been incredibly solid with the football in his time in the league, just merely… okay. From a fantasy football perspective, he’s a step up from Sam Darnold, but that’s not really saying much. Baker has just 17 top-12 finishes in his career, and he had just one last season. In fact, over the last two seasons, both players finished as top-12 quarterbacks 16.67% of the time. Both also have just four top-five seasons in their career. So when I say there’s nothing here for 1QB leagues, I mean there’s nothing here for 1QB leagues.
But, in a 2QB league, Baker Mayfield is a perfectly cromulent second quarterback, as he finishes as a QB1 or QB2 over 75% of the time. All he has to do is stave off perpetually disappointing Sam Darnold for the starting gig, and you can pencil him into your QB2 spot every week, or, ideally, your QB3 spot. Baker isn’t bad by any means, he’s just not good enough to be a top-12 QB. There’s a lot to like about his game when you see him as a fantasy QB2 or QB3, especially when you consider his propensity to push the ball downfield (top-12 in air yards per attempt each year of his career) and his little bit of rushing (about 10 yards per game). While Baker didn’t have a standout 2022, even with an injured shoulder, he still managed to average over 220 total yards and over a touchdown per game.
Like I said, not great but definitely serviceable in a 2QB league as your second QB. It’s also a situation where D.J. Moore and Christian McCaffrey, two very talented players, can do the hard work for Baker if he just gets them the ball on easy throws.
2022 Baker Mayfield Fantasy Football Draft Strategy:
In a 1QB league, again, please just ignore Baker Mayfield. That’s doubly so in week one, where he isn’t a great streamer against a defense that spent the last couple of years watching him flail around in practice and on the field, and who knows all of his weaknesses. See, because a “revenge game” narrative can go both ways. But, in a 2QB league, he’s a great QB3 if you have two rock-solid QBs in your starting lineup. He should get about 8 starts, minimum, and he is a QB1 or QB2 the vast majority of the time. That’s something you should definitely lean into at his QB27 ADP (two picks ahead of Jared Goff)
Best Case Scenario:
Baker Mayfield staves off Sam Darnold and finishes the year as QB15, thanks to his connection with D.J. Moore.
Worst Case Scenario:
Christian McCaffrey gets injured in week one, but when he goes down, he takes Baker Mayfield out with him.
Check out all our 2022 player profiles, here.
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[Statistics are sourced from pro-football-reference.com, airyards.com, and ftnfantasy.com]
[Header Image Source: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/3f/Baker_Mayfield_vs_Bengals_2019_%282%29.jpg under CC SA 2.0]