‘I’m never going to be Tom Brady’: Bucs’ new QB Baker Mayfield opens up on the pressure of following ‘the greatest of all time’ as he arrives in Tampa Bay after a whirlwind 2022
Baker Mayfield has landed with the Bucs following a chaotic 2022 season, and he has big shoes to fill – even if he insists he’s ‘not going to try to be Tom.’
After playing for the Panthers and Rams last year, Mayfield will compete to succeed Tom Brady in Tampa Bay after the seven-time Super Bowl winner called it quits for a second time in February.
‘Listen, I’m never going to be Tom Brady,’ Mayfield told reporters Monday. ‘There’s a reason he’s won so many Super Bowls. He’s the greatest of all time.
‘There’s no doubt about that. I’m not going to try to be Tom. I’m going to be me. That’s what has gotten me to this point. We’re going to do it differently, but that’s what makes this league so special. Everybody puts their own touch on it.’
Baker Mayfield has a shot to win the starting job with the Bucs after a chaotic 2022
Mayfield made four starts for the Rams after being released from the Panthers midseason
Mayfield landed in Tampa Bay on a one-year, $4million deal after a tumultuous 2022.
He was traded to the Panthers in July following the Browns’ acquisition of Deshaun Watson, and started six games in Carolina before being demoted to third-string and requesting his release, according to ESPN.
From there, he was claimed off waivers by the Rams – who were without starting quarterback Matthew Stafford – and went on to make four impressive starts for the team.
Mayfield tossed 850 yards and four touchdowns for LA, and led a thrilling 17-16 comeback vs. the Raiders just 48 hours after joining the team.
‘That’s definitely been a struggle,’ Mayfield said of his nomadic 2022 season.
‘There were times where, kind of searching in the mirror thinking, ‘All right. What’s next? What do I need to do?’ But you’ve got to relate it back to your success.
Tom Brady retired in February following a legendary career where he won seven Super Bowls
‘If I can review all the situations and experiences I’ve had and trust in those, and learn from them and not just harp on the negative stuff but take away just a little thing each time, that’s how you continue to grow. And I still believe that all the experiences I’ve gone through happened for a reason, and it’s going to help me in the long run.’
Mayfield will compete with the Bucs’ 2021 second-round pick, Kyle Trask for the starting job.
And the former Brown downplayed the notion that he’d respond poorly to starting the season as the backup.
‘Just take a look at last year. I really don’t have much to say other than that. I mean, everybody wants to talk about years ago, how I used to be. If you haven’t realized that I’ve changed a lot, then … that’s all right.’
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