Put aside expectations for the rest of the year, and the likelihood that he will have your general rookie quarterback stinker performances down the line: Baker Mayfield shined in what was effectively his debut last night.
With respect to Tyrod Taylor, who has been a solid starter for the last few years, the Browns had new energy when Baker Mayfield entered the game, after Taylor left with a concussion.
Taylor had a rough start to the game, completing just 4-of-14 passes for 19 yards. The Browns punted on their first six drives, before Taylor left the game.
Mayfield got the Browns on the board with a field goal on his first drive, which ended the first half. From there, he brought the team all the way back for a 21-17 win.
FS1’s Colin Cowherd and Jason McIntyre have been Baker Mayfield critics since the NFL Draft process, and that didn’t end today.
Baker even took a nice sideswipe at Cowherd in the moments after the game ended.
Some of Cowherd’s initial reactions to the game were predictable, but not unfair. One game does not a star quarterback make.
"He didn't scale Everest last night. This wasn't Kilimanjaro. It was the Jets at home with a rookie quarterback on a short week… Baker did some nice stuff and he deserves some praise, but no statues and parades." — @ColinCowherd pic.twitter.com/jYXt0Ubx6z
— Herd w/Colin Cowherd (@TheHerd) September 21, 2018
It should be noted that Cowherd has been anointing Sam Darnold since his days at USC. Darnold very well may prove to be the better player, but Mayfield thoroughly outplayed him last night, despite Darnold having way more first team reps, and two starts in his pocket.
Once Jason McIntyre came on The Herd, things got taken to a new level of stupid. McIntyre’s first big issue with Mayfield: the fact that he had his phone with him when he got to the NFL Network set after the game.
Are we really doing this again with Baker Mayfield? pic.twitter.com/bspBwokajI
— Marcus Mosher (@Marcus_Mosher) September 21, 2018
From the clip:
“Did you see, after the game, he runs off the field excited… maybe five minutes later, he comes out of the locker room to go on the NFL Network set, and he had his phone in his hand. That was the No. 1 thing I looked at… When you look at NFL quarterbacks after the game, they don’t have their phone.
“Baker Mayfield’s first thought was ‘Man, I got that win I gotta social media and see what people are saying about me.”
McIntyre dismissed co-host Joy Taylor’s interjection that he could have been texting his mom, while Cowherd looked completely dismayed that a 23-year old might check his phone after a game.
Of course, Mayfield could have been texting family, or his fiancee, or former teammates or coaches about his dazzling first game. Or maybe he was checking Twitter? He hasn’t tweeted or posted to Instagram since after the game, but if that was what he was doing, who cares?
The whole moment was completely absurd, and others are treating it as such.
Jason McIntyre has a job talking about sports for a lot of money. It’s quite remarkable since he isn’t good at it. https://t.co/6b7teWaPVV
— RJ Tapest (@SpikeMarxgolf) September 21, 2018
Jason McIntyre is it literal definition of moronic sports takes. https://t.co/ujjj06K0mA
— Jim Eisenacher (@SirJamesRadio) September 21, 2018
It baffles me that Jason McIntyre has a job in national sports media with the amount of stupidity that comes from his mouth. https://t.co/B4WVlhmLgn
— Taylor Ashbrook (@taylor_ashbrook) September 21, 2018
Can you believe that people actively choose to watch this stuff? https://t.co/MK1G9jIN5O
— Simms & Lefkoe (@SimmsAndLefkoe) September 21, 2018
McIntyre is the Great Value Skip Bayless. Can’t stand his takes. https://t.co/v8cXOsyeBE
— Spencer Nolen (@Rollin_Nolen) September 21, 2018
Jason McIntyre – “And if being on his PHONE wasn’t bad enough, Baker Mayfield then had … a DRINK OF WATER!!! When you look at NFL quarterbacks, they don’t get a DRINK OF WATER because they just quenched their thirst with a victory!!!”pic.twitter.com/uqhRWjUNhN
— 🆃🆁🅾🆈 🅷🆄🅶🅷🅴🆂 ™️ (@TommySledge) September 21, 2018
I’m going to go to Jason MCIntyre’s twitter for the sole purpose of blocking it
— AB (@AlBarfield2) September 21, 2018
And, finally, the perfect response:
— Alex Plaster (@alexplastercpa) September 21, 2018
We’re done here.