Tampa Bay Buccaneers to sign Baker Mayfield as potential Tom Brady successor, per reports

After reviving his career with a late-season stint with the Rams, Baker Mayfield will have the chance to lead a new team.

Mayfield will sign with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on a one-year deal worth up to $8.5 million, according to multiple reports. He'll have the chance to replace Tom Brady, who announced his retirement at the start of February, as the starting quarterback in Tampa. This now means that Mayfield, 27, will be joining his fourth team since the start of the 2021 season.

In five games with the Rams, four of which were starts, Mayfield completed 63.6% of his passes for 850 yards with four touchdowns against two interceptions. 

Los Angeles Rams quarterback Baker Mayfield throws a pass during the first half against the Las Vegas Raiders.

Mayfield will presumably compete with Kyle Trask, the only other Buccaneer quarterback on the roster. 

How did Baker Mayfield end up on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers?

After winning the Heisman Trophy in December 2017, Mayfield became the first overall selection of the Cleveland Browns in the NFL draft the following spring. He began his career on the bench for Cleveland but was named the starter Week 4 of that season. He would go on to win the 2018 Pro Football Writers of America Offensive Rookie of the Year award. 

Mayfield requested a trade from Cleveland as the team began its pursuit of Deshaun Watson, and the Browns eventually shipped Mayfield to the Panthers in July 2022 for a conditional draft pick. Mayfield began the season as the starter and posted uneven performances before he suffered a high-ankle sprain in a Week 5 loss against the San Francisco 49ers. Once Mayfield was healthy enough to return, he was eventually benched. Then, in December, the Panthers waived Mayfield and the Rams claimed him the following day. In Los Angeles, Mayfield's play improved, though the Rams floundered in a lost season. Mayfield had been playing under the fifth-year option of his rookie contract, which was set to expire Wednesday with the start of the new league year.