NFL draft guru Gil Brandt agrees with people comparing Baker Mayfield to Drew Brees, but he also said Mayfield has to have the same work ethic as Brees to make good on that comparison.
Brandt spoke with Sports Illustrated’s Peter King about the top quarterbacks in the 2018 NFL Draft. He ranked Mayfield as the No. 3 quarterback prospect in the class, behind UCLA’s Josh Rosen and USC’s Sam Darnold. He compared Mayfield to Brees, but made it clear Brees is only as good as he is because of how hard he works.
“Baker Mayfield is a guy like Drew Brees. He’s got velocity, good accuracy. We all undervalued Drew,” Brandt said. “But what you don’t know about anyone is which quarterbacks are gonna work like Drew Brees. Drew’s gonna work his ass off. His agent could get a call during the season from a car company saying, ‘We got a $200,000 commercial for you to tape on Tuesday.’ And Drew would say, ‘No, I’m not gonna do that on Tuesday. That’s my day to work on the next opponent.’ Your job if you’re going to draft one of these guys is to figure out who’s like Drew Brees.”
Mayfield has been compared to Brees and Russell Wilson numerous times throughout the draft evaluation process because of his size. Both of those quarterbacks have won Super Bowls, and both of them are known for their great work ethics. The good news for Mayfield is that he is widely praised for his competitiveness and desire to work.
Brandt said Rosen is the safest pick at quarterback in the draft. But it sounds like he is high on Mayfield as well, particularly if Mayfield works as relentlessly as the quarterback to whom he keeps getting compared.
Mayfield is expected to be taken near the top of the first round of the draft, which begins Thursday, April 26.