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Baker Mayfield Says ‘Never going to be Tom Brady’ During Buccaneers Intro Presser



Baker Mayfield

Brand new Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Baker Mayfield, who has bounced around the league over the last year and a half, had his introductory press conference with his new team this week and made one thing clear.

He is not Tom Brady and he never will be.

The Buccaneers are simply hoping that the former Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback and first overall draft pick can be their starter for the 2023 season, and reward their one-year contract gamble on his in free agency.

“That’s definitely been a struggle,” Mayfield said, according to ESPN’s Jenna Laine. “There were times where, kind of searching in the mirror thinking, ‘All right. What’s next? What do I need to do?’ But you’ve got to relate it back to your success. If I can review all the situations and experiences I’ve had and trust in those, and learn from them and not just harp on the negative stuff but take away just a little thing each time, that’s how you continue to grow. And I still believe that all the experiences I’ve gone through happened for a reason, and it’s going to help me in the long run.”

Mayfield started his career with the Cleveland Browns before being traded to the Carolina Panthers after the Browns landed Deshaun Watson. Mayfield fizzled out in Carolina and was released late in the season, and he would be claimed by the Los Angeles Rams and start 48 hours later, leading them to a comeback victory.

“It’s not how I drew my career up by any means,” Mayfield said. “If I was to tell you how it would go based on the plan, I wouldn’t have said I’d put on three different uniforms in the year 2022, but that’s how it happens. You’ve got to learn from it, roll with the punches, trust in God’s plan. But I’ve grown a lot. I appreciate all the things that have happened throughout my journey. It’s helped me get here today. I want to play this as long as I can so I’ve learned a lot of lessons along the way.”

“The thing I’ve realized the most in the last year, it is how can I help with what I’m best at?” Mayfield said. “And that’s, that’s being a good leader, being infectious, energetic, even when I’m not playing, helping guys out, you know, I’ve played a lot of ball, so I’ve seen a decent amount so I can help people out from being behind the scenes like I did last year quite a bit, and just enjoying the process. This is a dream I’m living. Why not enjoy it? But right now I want to compete and I want to win.”

“Just take a look at last year. I really don’t have much to say other than that. I mean, everybody wants to talk about years ago, how I used to be. If you haven’t realized that I’ve changed a lot, then … that’s all right.”

“My personality might rub people the wrong way, but I am who I am and that’s how I was raised to be. I’m not trying to play to be your friend or to impress you. I’m doing it because I love it and I’m doing it because I love my teammates. And I think all my teammates would say that behind closed doors, [they] knew who I really am and that’s what really matters, my family and I trust in that. So it is what it is. I’m not too worried about the outside persona.”

Mayfield now focuses on winning the starting job in Tampa, where the Bucs are looking to build a new future following the retirement of Tom Brady.

“Listen, I’m never going to be Tom Brady,” Mayfield said. “There’s a reason he’s won so many Super Bowls. He’s the greatest of all time. There’s no doubt about that. I’m not going to try to be Tom. I’m going to be me. That’s what has gotten me to this point. We’re going to do it differently, but that’s what makes this league so special. Everybody puts their own touch on it.”

Anthony DiMoro is the creator of Sports Rants and the CEO of Elite Rank Media. He is a former Contributor for Forbes and the Huffington Post where he covered sports, social media, and SEO. Anthony formerly hosted the 'Forbes SportsMoney Podcast'.