“He’s Not Playing Hero Ball”

October 3rd, 2023

“Hey, Schefter, what do you think?”

One of the rare preseason Bucs believers in the national media, a big-name former Buccaneer, emphsized yesterday that Baker Mayfield’s hot start is not a fluke and maybe not even special.

Richard Sherman opened up on FS1.

“What he’s doing is very sustainable. I don’t think he’s playing outside of his mind,” Sherman said of Mayfield. “I think he’s playing up to his No. 1 overall pick potential. He’s doing a great job taking what the defense gives. He’s not playing hero ball. Dave Canales is doing a great job putting him in position to be successful. He has two really good All-Pro/Pro Bowl-caliber receivers. He lost Mike Evans early in the game. You know what Chris Godwin did? He stepped up and made big plays for him over and over again and again. Mr. Reliable, Chris Godwin.”

Sherman went on to explain that with every win Mayfield is getting closer to a fat new contract from the Bucs and preventing the team from drafting a quarterback in April.

In Sherman’s mind, if Mayfield can get the Bucs to the No. 23 overall pick, then he’s got fantastic job security in Tampa. History says that will require at least a 10-win season.

31 Responses to ““He’s Not Playing Hero Ball””

  1. Boss Says:

    his sack total is beyond belief. He looks like he is encircled 50% of the plays and makes his way out of it. I like BM. and good job TB.

    can;t believe I just said that.

  2. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    I think 10 wins is about the maximum of our potential and everyone should be very happy with that.

    We simply, positively must get our running game going.

  3. Casual Observer Says:

    He has been a pleasant surprise to me. Really like his savvy/moxie. His experience is showing. Keep it up – and I think he will.

  4. Sly Pirate Says:

    The Reality
    Baker is doing great for the Bucs but he is still damaged goods to the NFL. No matter how well he does, Tampa is only bidding against themselves.

    Licht loves a complete team and he’s loyal to the guys he drafts. Licht won’t likely sacrifice Evans, White, Winfield, or Wirfs for Baker.

    If anything, Baker’s success creates value for Canales.

  5. Hodad Says:

    The real surprise is Canalas. He got Gino back on track, now he’s got Mayfield looking like the first pick in the draft on his way to come back player of the year. Not to mention in one off season he got Trask looking like a real NFL QB. Give both Mayfield, and Trask credit for putting in the work, but Canalas is the mastermind behind the results we’re seeing from Mayfield.

  6. Greg Says:

    This team is FAR more complete than we thought it would be. The line is developing really well. Canales has proved to be a competent (and complimentary) OC to Bowles. Bowles has acknowledged he needed to be more aggressive in his philosophy with the team. And we have a kicker that can get us the 50+ yard FGs. The last piece was figuring if Baker could be our QB. So far, he’s unquestionably shown that.

    Yes, we need to do it against tough competition. But let’s be clear, the Saints D is a top 10 unit. And we looked very capable against them in their house. That can’t be dismissed.

    HOWEVER. We need a run game. I get we’re cap strapped. But man, coming into the bye week is THE PERFECT TIME to try and bring in a #1 RB to compete with White. Is that a Johnathan Taylor trade? Signing one of the three 28 YO RBs on the street that still have miles left on them. But IMHO, we’re a running game away from being ready to compete at a higher level.

    Fingers crossed. If I’m Todd Bowles (who is still coaching for his job security) I’m all over Licht to try and get something done.

  7. Bucnjim Says:

    I think if the Bucs can go 5-1 there will be serious talk of finding Mayfield help with the running game. They have to show they can compete with Philly, Dallas & San Fran though before they start selling out for this year. I think we still have $72 million in dead cap space that needs to be addressed.

  8. BakerFan Says:

    For those of you that think no one will be interested in Baker after a successful season this year, you are smoking crack. I think Baker will stay if he is given the right type of money he deserves and that is a better contract than the QB that he just defeated in New Orleans or what Daniel Jones got in New York.

  9. Beej Says:

    “Boss Says:
    October 3rd, 2023 at 10:51 am
    his sack total is beyond belief. He looks like he is encircled 50% of the plays and makes his way out of it. I like BM. and good job TB.

    can;t believe I just said that.”

    Contrast THAT with $40 million Daniel Jones last night. Either his guys NEVER got open, or he can’t go thru his reads, as he took off running nearly every play

  10. Capt.Tim Says:

    Looking Good, Mr. Mayfield.
    Looking goid

  11. Obvious Says:

    Baker Mayfield IS winning me over. I had no reason at all to believe in him. He has with the exception of a pretty decent beginning to his pro career, Not impressed with him all the way and up to the end of the pre season.

    In fact it seemed like an “obviously tanking” type of move to have hired him at all. Well, I’m one whom at this point, is starting to change his mind. In Fact I’m starting to like the guy very much.

    I was afraid that he wasn’t confident enough to sling it! I was about to Blow up after this game that under 200 total yards would lead to wanting him RUN!
    Looks like that topic has been satisfied in my mind with 3 TOUCH DOWNS through the air and plenty of yards of offense with the projections heading upwards after this aint’s game.

    If only the run game could…

    I’m Feeling Good about our chances. I’m feeling good about Mayfield and I’m feeling good about Bowles and Canales. I’m just plain feeling good….

    I’ll keep my promise when the “CONFIDENCE” poll comes out……

    GO BUCS!

  12. Brandon Says:

    As I’ve said numerous times before the season started, this is a 10+ win team. The only people are surprised are the same people that claim that Tom Brady was the team… newsflash, the team was 8-9 last season…. so that means Brady was average. All we need is slightly above average play at the QB position this season and we win 10+ games.

  13. BigMacAttack Says:

    I see the Bucs as the 4’th best in the NFC and improving. Philadelphia and San Francisco are 1 and 1A. The Cowboys are #3 and the Bucs are right there behind them. If Mayfield and Canales continue to improve the offense and the Bucs stay healthy they should get to the playoffs and be ready for a rematch with the Eagles. I see the Bucs in the top 10 of NFL teams.

  14. Mike C Says:

    Big Mac, we need to beat Detroit before we are 4th in the NFC, lions took down KC…. so I would give them the edge at this moment.

  15. orlbucfan Says:

    Right now, BM wants to prove he’s no loser and can help a team win. Bucs are slowly improving. We get by the Lions, that will be a statement. Iggles and 49ers are the NFC juggernauts. They had any serious injuries yet? No? That means lucky, too. The Cryboys (Dallas) are also in that company. Thank god, the Bye Week came at a good time for a change!

  16. Joshua porter Says:

    I think it doesn’t matter what bucs do they draft a qb 1st rd. There’s way to many good ones this year. If the guy from WA slides to middle of rd …. dude is fire

  17. darengibo Says:

    Just imagine what Licht can do without the MILLIONS in dead cap space next year, and if Baker plays his way to a new contract, the draft can continue to build upon our foundation!

    Maybe once signed there will be a re-boot of his insurance commericals showing him move into RayJay!!

  18. geno711 Says:


    Our cap situation next year is still bad:

    We have 22 million of cap space but:

    1. No starting QB.
    2. No Devin White.
    3. No LVD.
    4. No ME.
    5. A still injured Ryan Jensen.

    I am pretty sure we create more cap space by cutting Russell Gage next year.

  19. Defense Rules Says:

    Thanks for bringing to light what Richard Sherman said about this team. He’s spot on IMO about Mayfield, Canales, Evans & Godwin.

    Still not sure at this point if I agree with what he said though about Mayfield getting ‘a fat new contract from the Bucs and preventing the team from drafting a quarterback in April’. If he continues to soar, there’ll be other suitors willing to pay big bucks for his services (and before you say it Joe, I agree with you, one of them won’t be Cleveland).

    And since next year is supposed to be so good for QBs, my guess is that the Bucs will draft one in the 1st (most likely) or in the 2nd Rnd (at the latest). Mayfield may well opt to go to the highest bidder, and Trask is in his last year with us (and still unproven).

  20. Dwayne Cone Says:

    As long as Canales keeps him in no think situations he will continue to do fine.
    Only two picks with a possible 4 more with the close calls is way better than Cousins is doing. Except for the deep ball that is.

    Fortunately the defense bails him out faster than a Momma can get her Baby out of an Arkansas City Jail.

  21. Dwayne Cone Says:

    BigMacAttack Says:

    I see the Bucs as the 4’th best in the NFC and improving.

    Got a ways to go before you can say forth unless you argue by winning the Division the Worse they can Seed is 4th.

    Washington was blow for blow with the Eagles and Seahawks squeeked out a win over the Lions. Both are better teams right now. That like a lot of things can change fast in the NFL though.

  22. Defense Rules Says:

    geno711 … ‘Our cap situation next year is still bad’.

    Yea verily Geno. That $22 mil in CAP space needs to be even further caveated to show how bad it’ll still be. It’s based on 34 players being under contract, PLUS us owing 6 other players not under contract (Evans, LVD, Mayfield, Gaines, Winfield & Feiler) money for void years (totaling $21.7 mil). We’ve also got Jensen’s & Gage’s contracts to deal with (together they count $30.6 mil against the CAP, but their Dead CAP is ‘only’ 18.7 mil, so there’s some potential savings there).

    Assuming that we exercise those 2 outs, that’d leave us with 32 players on the roster and a tad over $34 mil to play with (until we do some other restructuring or cutting of course). Like you said though, we’d have a bunch of guys we’d almost surely want to re-sign, like ME13, LVD, Mayfield, Winfield, White, Gaines, probably Feiler, surely McLaughlin, and most likely Thompkins & Delaney. And of course we need money to sign our next draft class. That $34 mil woulldn’t go very far against those needs. Me thinks that it’s gonna take still another year of kicking the can down the street & doing some creative financing. But hey, JL’s used to that by now.

  23. Jack Burton Mercer Says:

    10 wins means 7-6 from here on out. That would be underachieving in my book.

  24. stpetebucfan Says:

    So the news out of Cleveland is that the Brown’s “savior” DeShaun Watson…drafted to replace Baker…is not good.

    Coach Kevin Stefanski said Monday that Watson had been medically cleared to play, but Watson made the decision not to. “I’m comfortable with the medical,” Stefanski said. “Obviously, we talked with the doctors, structurally we feel good about Watson’s shoulder.”

    Cleveland is decent this year and their next game is huge…against Division leading Baltimore. Imagine what all the macho men berating Kancey would be saying if they’re Cleveland fans.

    About $$$. I think Baker needs to play the majority of the season before backing up the Brinks truck. Unless Licht gets some major discount for resigning him early there is no rush. Make sure Baker’s health holds up and then sign him if his play continues as it’s been.

    Lots of talk about the cap. Something has to give if the Bucs plan to resign a Heisman Trophy winning #1 pick in the draft who led the sorry Browns to the playoffs for the first time in decades and unlike Watson tried to gut it through a shoulder injury costing his reputation in the W-L’s. Baker will be worth the $$$ he gets if the Bucs make the playoffs.

  25. stpetebucfan Says:

    D.R. You are our capologist how is this team going to afford Baker if he’s successful?

    The top 10 are all north of 50 million annually! IF Baker wins ten and reaches the playoff on a team expected to suck after Brady’s departure, how much will he be worth?

    Which brings a philosophical question. Is ONE position worth that much in a TEAM sport that features 22 starters, plus ST’s and backups.

    I think Mahomes dominates…the others are very good but 55 million for Joe Burrow? 52 million for Lamar Jackson? I don’t know but then that’s why I do not work in an NFL front office and why I leave the hard questions for you!

  26. Rod Munch Says:

    Richard Sherman opened up on FS1. “What he’s doing is very sustainable.”


    Wow, copying me word for word. I had no idea he reads the comments here. What’s what Sherman, sorry about calling you old, slow and washed up before – while it was true, I did give you credit for coming in off the couch and playing a full game, even if you did look awful.

  27. Rod Munch Says:

    “I think he’s playing up to his No. 1 overall pick potential.”


    Well that’s complete nonsense, you don’t take a QB No. 1 overall to be a game manager who’s top concern is not to make mistakes.

    I agree with the idea, that Mayfield, unlike Fitz in 2018, is playing in a way that should hold up well over the year and isn’t just a fluke – but at the same time, he’s not out there winning games, he’s just not losing them. At some point he’ll need to make some big plays and win a game and won’t be able to do so by checking it down, and I hope he comes up big when that happens.

    But right now, he’s not needed to do anything more than play it safe in 3 of the 4 games, and he’s doing a good job at that. But No. 1 overall? Come on, stop with the nonsense.

  28. stpetebucfan Says:


    I might have agreed with you about the first 3 games but Mayfield clearly, along with the D won that game.

    Its’ also obvious that TB12 could not have even tossed two of those touchdowns and while he had better touch on that endzone fade would he have turtled before.

    Mayfield deserves the credit for winning that game. Although like D.R. I think it’s a team sport so saying any QB “wins” a game is a stretch for me. Mahomes is obviously great and a difference maker…but as the Bucs showed in the SB he still needs a TEAM around him. I do not take away from CG14’s..the OL or the two kid WR’s…but Baker kept those plays alive and sacrificed his body to do it.

  29. Rod Munch Says:

    stpetebucfan – I’ve been very impressed by Mayfield this year, that wasn’t an insult – but to say he’s been playing like a No. 1 pick is just nonsense. You expect a No. 1 to go out and make huge plays and win games for you by doing something special, Mayfield is the opposite of that.

    Which isn’t an insult, or even a bad thing, he’s winning games by being a steady game manager and not making mistakes. Which, again, is a good thing since I think that’s a lot more sustainable and something he can maintain.

    I would, however, like to see the offense putting up more points, but they’re going to always be limited by having Todd Bowles as the head coach since he’s so conservative and shuts down the offense once the team is up, and thinks you can run out the clock with 15-mins to go in the 4th quarter. Versus the Saints, the offense put up 17 on it’s own, and the other points were because the defense got some huge turnovers deep in Saints terrority.

    Against better teams the offense will have to do more than 17 points a game, and that’s where I’d like to see Baker go to the next level – but it’s also going to take the coaches to stop wasting downs.

    All of which is a good thing since it means this offense still has plenty of room to grow.

  30. garro Says:

    Sherman is not wrong. I am not sure that fat contract is gonna be with the Bucs howver. Chris made some money on Sunday for sure. His value to the team is now quite evident whoever is throwing him the ball. What Baker is doing may not be sustainable due to the fact that he is consistently exposing himself to some very big hits, as witnessed on Sunday. That is a major concern for me.

    Go Bucs!

  31. August 1976 Buc Says:

    Rod.. one thing different from last year is a QB that is not a 45yr old sitting duck. The Bucs rank last currently again in Rushing I believe like what Brady had toi deal with.
    But Bakers ability to move around has been a difference maker so far. That cannot be understated. That coupled with he is not turning the ball over.

    I think it has been since Jeff Garcia since the Bucs have had a QB that could move like Baker.
    Brady-Winston-Glennon-Josh McCown- Josh Freeman-Byron Leftwich and then Jeff Garcia in 2008.

    So really Baker has been a difference maker, not just managing the position, and it is very good to see.