PALM BEACH, Fla. — Quarterback Baker Mayfield remained on the Cleveland Browns‘ roster Monday morning, 10 days after the team traded for Deshaun Watson. Nevertheless, the Browns have every plan to part ways with him, coach Kevin Stefanski said during a media availability at the league’s annual meeting.
“I think everyone understands the situation, and we’re hoping that it is resolved soon,” Stefanski said.
Mayfield has been the starter since his rookie season in 2018, but the Browns have overhauled the position this month, trading for Watson and signing free agent Jacoby Brissett as his backup. Mayfield is guaranteed his full base salary of $18.858 million in 2022, a factor that is likely complicating trade efforts.
“It’s a unique situation,” Stefanski said. “We’ve got to see how it plays out. I think of all of us would love an answer yesterday, but that’s not the reality of it.”
The Browns’ voluntary offseason conditioning program opens April 19 in Berea, Ohio. Stefanski said he expects that Watson and Brissett be in attendance. He also acknowledged the possibility that Brissett will need to start for part of the season if Watson is suspended by the NFL after an investigation into allegations of sexual assault and sexual misconduct.
“That’s something we’ve spoken about,” Stefanski said. “Until we know that final answer — we’re speaking in hypotheticals right now — but we’ve got to be ready whenever a decision is made, potentially to go with Jacoby, or not. So we’ll wait and see what the league has.”