Browns, Mayfield in 'holding pattern' on extension talks

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By , Audacy Sports

The Browns and quarterback Baker Mayfield appear be in a "holding pattern" with respect to a possible contract extension, and according to a new report this posture seems to be suit both parties just fine.

The team was yet to offer an extension to Mayfield, according to Jeff Howe of The Athletic, but the fourth-year veteran has "never had an issue" with letting his play speak for itself and taking the long approach in contract talks.

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Browns brass and the former No. 1 overall pick have a "positive" relationship, the report said, and neither side has ruled out resuming negotiations during the season.

The team is still evaluating Mayfield in his second year under head coach Kevin Stefanski, according to Howe, while the former Oklahoma Sooners standout has yet to express desired contract terms but "isn't necessarily trying to reset the market."

Mayfield is already under contract through 2022, after the Browns exercised his fifth-year option, and they could keep him in the fold for 2023 by using the franchise tag, which can be a fraught process.

The 26-year-old signal caller is thought to be seeking a relatively shorter deal than some of his peers, per Howe, perhaps somewhere in the range of four years, which would give him another shot at free agency at around age 30.

Last season, his first in Stefanski's dynamic offense, Mayfield led the Browns to their first postseason appearance since 2002. It marked something of a rebound for Mayfield after a disappointing 2019 campaign, which came on the heels of an encouraging rookie season.

Even last season, Mayfield's performance was somewhat uneven, finishing with a strong second half after mixed results in the first half. The inconsistency is apparently a factor in the Browns' interest in keeping a methodical pace for extension talks, the report said.

Read the full report at The Athletic here (subscription required).

The Browns, after falling to the Chiefs in their season opener, will look to rebound this week against the Houston Texans. Kickoff was set for 1 p.m. ET in Cleveland.

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