Quarterback Baker Mayfield didn’t take long to acclimate to the Los Angeles Rams offense.
Mayfield led a dramatic, 13-point comeback over the Las Vegas Raiders with just minutes on the clock on Thursday night. This was just a couple of days after being claimed by the Rams on waivers.
It earned him a game ball and plenty of adoration from his new teammates.
For now, Mayfield will give the Rams a steady veteran presence to guide them out of 2022.
Los Angeles has next-to-no chance at making the playoffs. They’re not even guaranteed that Sean McVay will return for another season.
However, if Mayfield plays well enough to close the year, Rams general manager Les Snead might fork up the change to keep him there for the next season.
A lot of this would have to do with quarterback Matthew Stafford. The former Lions quarterback led the Rams to a Super Bowl win in February. However, the Rams placed Stafford on injured reserve with a spinal cord contusion.
In NFL years, Stafford is no spring chicken. He will turn 35 in February, and spinal cord-related injuries are no joke. It’s not to say his retirement would be imminent. However, a lot about his future will hinge on how badly his injury affects his ability to play at a high level. The risks of re-injury are also palpable.
Mayfield might offer the Rams a proven commodity to lean on should Stafford’s days be winding down.
The Oklahoma alum did say he felt right at home after leading the Rams to a victory on Thursday.
After falling out of favor in both Cleveland and Carolina, Mayfield could do a lot worse than working with McVay if the coach stays in Los Angeles. Even if Stafford starts in the fall, Mayfield could sit behind him for a year and see where it takes him.
While Mayfield still has more to prove in Los Angeles, a strong start could hint to a stable future for the former top NFL Draft pick.