Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield had quite the rookie season in 2018.
Mayfield set a rookie record for touchdown passes with 27, a total that left him just three shy of becoming just the second quarterback in franchise history to throw 30 touchdown passes in a single season. He was also just 407 yards away from becoming the second quarterback in team history to pass for 4,000 yards in a season.
He did all that while starting just 13 games, meaning both of those marks are well within his reach in the 2019 season.
Just as importantly, Mayfield brought an attitude that anything is possible, which helped him check in at No. 50 on NFL.com’s annual list of the 100 best players in the league:
Mayfield joins (Deshaun) Watson as a quarterback ranked No. 50 in the Top 100 after their rookie campaign. Like Watson last season, Mayfield gets the bump after bursting onto the scene. For Mayfield and Cleveland, more important than any number of touchdowns or passing yards is one category: wins. In 2018, the Browns went 7-7 with Mayfield at quarterback (including his relief effort, debut win over the Jets on Thursday Night Football). From 2015 through 2017, the Browns won four games total. All the Browns did in the offseason was add Odell Beckham Jr. to their receiving corps. Like Watson, Mayfield has the supporting cast to make a playoff run in Year 2. These two, along with Patrick Mahomes, are the future of the AFC -- if that Tom Brady guy ever retires.
Mayfield enters 2019 as the unquestioned leader of the Browns and should continue to rewrite the franchise’s record books and continue to rise up the annual list of the league’s best players.