Bruce Arians Makes Bold Claim About New Tampa Bay Buccaneers QB Baker Mayfield

New Bucs QB Baker Mayfield

Getty Image / Cliff Welch

Heading into this year’s NFL Draft, there were a fe teams football fans knew would be looking for a quarterback.

The Panthers, Texans, and Colts were all obvious choices.

However, there were even more teams that seemed like they could be in the market, but it wasn’t entirely clear if they would be.

That group included the Raiders, Vikings, Titans, Seahawks, Falcons, and Buccaneers.

Of that group, only the Titans ended up leaving the draft with a QB in the first two days.

This week, a front office member from one of those other teams revealed why they didn’t go after a QB.

According to Pewter Report’s Scott Reynolds, Bruce Arians said that he had Baker Mayfield rated higher coming out of college than any of the top QBs in this class while speaking at a gala for his charity.

“I can honestly say out of these four, I had Baker rated higher,” Arians said. “That’s an honest opinion – coming out [of Oklahoma].”

To begin with, that assessment is somewhat bold as Bryce Young and CJ Stroud were both better at younger ages that Baker was in college.

He has a much stronger case against Anthony Richardson and Will Levis, who weren’t all that impressive at the college level.

However, how Baker graded 5 years ago probably isn’t the best indicator of whether or not the Bucs should be looking for another quarterback.

The reality is that Baker Mayfield has struggled the past couple of years. Last year he even played badly enough that the Carolina Panthers cut him when their only alternatives were PJ Walker and Sam Darnold.

Maybe having Chris Godwin and Mike Evans to throw the ball to in 2023 will help him turn his career around, but he hasn’t proven that he is dependable starter at the NFL level the past couple of years.

He has the faith of one of the most recognizable names in the Bucs front office, but if he doesn’t perform well this season, the Bucs may be looking at evaluations of college QBs again in a year.