When it comes to quarterback Baker Mayfield, the Carolina Panthers are focused on this season, and this season only. Before any discussions about a contract extension take place, the team wants to see how everything plays out.
During a press conference Tuesday, Panthers general manager Scott Fitterer commented on Mayfield’s future and gave zero commitment of keeping him around long term. While Fitterer did not rule out an extension, he said right now they are just worried about this season.
“Our whole focus was bringing Baker in to compete with Sam [Darnold],” Fitterer said (via Pro Football Talk). “We’ll take it up to training camp. That’s as far as we’re going to take it and we’ll let it play out throughout the season.”
As for when contract talks could take place, Fitterer said, “We’ll make decisions based later in the season, whether it’s November or December. At that point, once there’s a track record behind him in this offense and this organization.”
Mayfield had many rumors surrounding him this offseason with reports of where he may land, but it was not until July that he found a new home in Charlotte, North Carolina. In coming from the Cleveland Browns to the Panthers, Mayfield took about a $3.5 million pay cut with the trade.
Things did not exactly end smoothly with the Browns, as the 27-year-old felt “disrespected” by how the organization handled everything. Mayfield is hoping to find the “stabilization” he’s after in Carolina, where he will have to earn the starting job over Darnold, who joined the team in 2021. Mayfield believes the two can use the competition to better themselves as players.