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Baker Mayfield trade currently being discussed by Browns and Panthers, but money still sticking point

Jason Burgos
baker mayfield trade, browns, panthers
Credit: USA Today Network

The Cleveland Browns and Carolina Panthers are still in discussions on a Baker Mayfield trade, but unsurprisingly, money is still the holdup in a deal getting done.

Like the classic Wu-Tang Clan song says, the Mayfield trade “saga continues.” During the 2022 offseason, the relationship between the top overall pick in the 2018 NFL draft, and the Browns, has completely deteriorated. The negative situation is all on Cleveland after pursuing Deshaun Watson — a player who may not even play this season — and disenfranchising their current starter to a point where reconciliation is highly unlikely.

Unfortunately for both sides, a trade to send Mayfield to a place where he is wanted has been very problematic. The former Oklahoma QB has $18.8 million owed to him in 2022 and with most team’s salary caps spoken for, the few teams that are interested in adding him remain hesitant about taking on that money and possible tax penalties.

Related: Cleveland Browns schedule – Projections and analysis for the 2022 season

Nevertheless, if there was one franchise that would certainly improve from making a Baker Mayfield trade, it’s the Carolina Panthers. The team has what looks like a failed former Jets first-round pick in Sam Darnold set to be the starter in Week 1, and they did not address the position with an impact player in April’s NFL Draft.

Money continues to be the biggest hurdle in a Baker Mayfield trade

baker mayfield trade, browns, panthers
Credit: USA Today Network

It seems that Carolina realizes that and is still working towards a possible swap. On Tuesday, CBS Sports NFL insider Jonathan Jones reported that the Panthers and Browns are in active talks about making a deal, however, money continues to still be the biggest hurdle in negotiations.

“As minicamps begin today for the Browns and Panthers, trade talks between the teams continue surrounding QB Baker Mayfield, per sources,” Jones wrote on Twitter. “The main issue remains Mayfield’s salary and how much (or how little) teams pay.”

A report last week suggested the Cleveland Browns would be willing to take half of the $18.8 million owed to the four-year veteran this season. Mayfield was officially excused from appearing at the team’s ongoing minicamp last week.