Baker Mayfield Making It Work

November 17th, 2023

Defies probabilities.

So the NextGen Stats elves are playing with their completion probability numbers. And they seem to like Bucs quarterback Baker Mayfield.

All the rage these days in the advanced stats world is probabilities. The ones that drive Joe wild are third-and-short and fourth-and-short.

Someone throws out a wildly misleading number and all the ADD math types regurgitate it like it’s gospel, killing coaches who don’t go with the numbers (Bruce Arians) and hoisting coaches who do go with the numbers as savants (Brandon Staley).

The results? Who cares, they went for it!

Meanwhile, nowhere in the probability number on third- or fourth-and-short detail information on if a defensive tackle is eating a center for lunch or if a defensive end may be hungover and having a bad game, or if the quarterback is playing on a bum ankle and can’t run well or plant on his foot.

Voodoo analytics, you say?

Probabilities for passes are a bit different and more realistic. On Sunday, Mayfield was completing passes when the odds weren’t really in his favor.

It helps to have two stud receivers like Mike Evans and Chris Godwin.

Joe likes NextGen Stats like the next guy. But like with all stats, they are neither foolproof nor absolute. You have to use come common sense and perspective in them all.

57 Responses to “Baker Mayfield Making It Work”

  1. Jack Clark Says:

    Baker Mayfield average at best

    The only surprise is him beating the 49ers this week

    Tee hee

  2. Crickett Baker Says:

    He has been doing what we need and better than expected. GO BUCS!

  3. Tye Says:

    SO FAR, BM6 is better than anyone the Bucs had before Tom Brady…..
    Whether he keeps it up or not will be revealed in time….
    The Bucs have never been able to develop a QB they drafted so hopefully they don’t go back to that situation!

  4. Onetrickpony Says:

    Tye, but we could draft an NFL ready Q.B., like Crab Legs was declared.
    Better known as Mr. 30-30

  5. David Says:

    Keep trying to sell Baker to us. At the end of the day he is only capable of defeating bad teams and lose his ass to good teams. Uh wait he lost to Atlanta team that was on long road losing streak until then. The season was over Baker when he threw a last minute pick in the end zone at the end of the game. We will be 4-6 this Sunday with only seven games left. We would be lucky to win half of them with this inefficient offense.

  6. Jeebs the Honey Bear Says:

    It’s very difficult to land an elite QB. Most top QB picks are busts. What are the chances we land a better QB than Baker, who is playing like a top 15 QB in the world, in his first year here, with a first year OC, and no running game? Baker looks like a guy who can win games for us when he needs to, has protected the football, and has a cannon for an arm. Our best bet is to continue to build around him. My biggest concern is with Bowles, who I don’t think has what it takes to be a championship head coach. But Baker? I could see him winning a Super Bowl with the right team. I hope that team is the Bucs!

  7. Proudbucsfan Says:

    Baker does have great escapability and he has progressed while he’s been here. I hope he keeps getting better. If he gets rid of the ball sooner and his anticipatory throws improve he could be elite. If it doesn’t happen then he stays mediocre.

  8. Hodad Says:

    Most first round QBs are busts. What are the chances we land a franchice QB if we take one in the first round? I can tell you what the chances are if we don’t take one, ZERO. If you’re O.K. with rooting for a .500 team, stick with Baker.

  9. garro Says:

    Joe I like to think I have learned a bit about the game of football over the many years of playing the game and then watching it as a fan. I absolutely agree with you!

    Odds of making a first down on 4th and 30 are of course infinitesimally small. It is easy to see and understand why. These days when I see stats for things that are barely meaningful or for that matter understandable it makes me want to yell at someone.

    There used to be a saying that football is a game of inches. A pass that barely hits a receivers finger tips and you wonder at the end of a game if it had been 2 inches lower what a difference in the outcome it might have made is a great example. But that is one of the things that make this game so intriguing to me.

    Stat geeks want to quantify everything, assign it a number, and put it in a spread sheet. You simply can’t take all the variables into account. A gust of wind made the ball sail just out of reach for example.

    Some of the stuff posed as stats is absolutely ridiculous! I think some of these guys would be better served to actually watch some games.

    And yes I have taken a college stats class and found it equally ridiculous! I can prove with stats that the earth is flat for a modern day TikTok stat geek just to piss some folks off and to prove that stats can and will be manipulated to show anything you want.

    Think about it…If all the stat geeks had it right…Vegas would be very, very worried!

    garro steps down from his soap box…

    Go Bucs!

  10. Seattle Buc Says:

    Hey look Joe likes stats now.

  11. Obvious Says:

    I keep trying to figure out the 3 or 4 guys that pound the drum for Mayfield day in and day out. I keep trying to figure out their claim that Mayfield has a cannon for an arm?

    Where is this cannon? Are you guys claiming h that because he’s unusually short for a pro qb? The trouble with the cannon arm claim is that Mayfield is constantly throwing his targets short… Which is confounding because the targets are huge dudes. ALWAYS having to adjust and comeback to the ball.. SO RARE to actually HIT THEM IN STRIDE.

    How about a Relevant stat that most of the Pro league gauges QB passing success by? HOW ABOUT LEADING THE RECIEVER? Here’s another one.. HOW ABOUT YARDS AFTER THE CATCH?

    How about THOSE STATS Joe? I just Do Not see the cannon for an arm here on any average. But I’m far More Concerned about his accuracy. FAR MORE.

    It seems “in the general area” is “in reality” the best we can hope for. THERE IS WHERE I’VE GOT A PROBLEM WITH BAKER GOING FORWARD… I DO like a lot of things he has to offer and Baker is the PERFECT back up qb. You really can’t ask for a whole lot more in that aspect but he doesn’t see it that way as some of the commenter’s but I do.

    A “franchise” QB is “ON THE MONEY” a MINIMUM of 80% of his throws. And I DO MEAN on the money while “LEADING THE RECEIVER FOR ADDITIONAL YAC”.

    We don’t have that with Baker. If he had that capability, he’d be worth the 40 to 50 Million Dollar range ESPECIALLY with the other STRONG aspects of his game.
    He’s more the try to get in the neighborhood of the reciever kind of qb. At least half of his throws are left or right of the target, too high or too low of the target. He’s also missing the “touch” of an actual elite qb.

    This tamed down yet “effective” gun slinger has so far worked best for him in his career. More control, better results.

  12. WyomingJoe Says:

    JEEBS: Great comments.

    DAVID: The usual diatribe.

    I’ve always liked Baker for many of the reasons JEEBS mentioned. Plus, he’s the kind of guy teammates rally around because he never quits. Give him a center and guard on the O-Line, add a RB and we’re on our way. Time will tell if the Bucs do the smart thing and resign him, or bend to the whims of the handful of loser fans on this site. The 49ers have three losses. Let’s make it four. They’re not invincible.

  13. K_bassuka Says:

    Joe, there’s a small percent of completion probability on every Maybefield throw. It seems that 90% of Barker’s passes require a great catche/adjustment by the receivers, place in a spot that prevents the receiver from continuing his stride or an over/under throw.

  14. JK Says:

    Cmon supporters!!! How can you do you when you’ve got David slinging arrows from his moms basement, and the Throbbing Rod Muncher CONSTANTLY dropping their expertise on you??? Let it go.
    Despite leading the worst franchise in NFL history ( reincarnation of the Clowns) to the playoffs and playing winning playoff QB……..Listen to mommas boy David………..BM can only beat bad teams.
    Listen to the Muncher!!!

    What is wrong with you supporters?

    (Go Bucs!)

  15. realistic-optimistic Says:

    @Hodad, exactly!

    Yes the odds of getting a HoF QB in the draft are low, but you still try. Low probability is still better zero.

    There are several reasons to draft a QB (and not overpay for Baker):
    1) The Bucs are still in serious cap hell next year
    2) The QB draft is projected to be historic
    3) Baker is a borderline starter
    4) Bowles wanted Baker and he may get fired
    5) The odds of a middle-tier QB winning a SB are even lower than drafting a HoF QB

  16. realistic-optimistic Says:

    Seriously, there are 36 QBs in the HoF. Not many, right?

    Now consider that only 7 middle-tier QBs have won a SB. I’m sure there will be some disagreement about what constitutes “middle-tier” (e.g., Eli), but here’s the list I came up with:

    * Jim McMahon (sb20)
    * Jeff Hostetler (sb25)
    * Mark Rypen (sb26)
    * Trent Dilfer (sb35)
    * Brad Johnson (sb37)
    * Joe Flacco (sb47)
    * Nick Foles (sb52)

  17. Since76 Says:

    This season on the bucs Bakers ceiling is average. If this team blows cap space on him next year and beyond they are not trying to improve. They will be a below middling team for years. That’s a no thank you from me. They need a reset. Qb is the #1 need on this team.

  18. Mark hardt Says:

    I work in a statistical field but i am also highly intuitive as tested by the US Army when I was a young officer. Intuition is highly accurate and powerful in the chaotic battle environment. Computers still can,t do it. So why are we ignoring the most powerful advantage humans have? Because you can blame statistics when things go wrong rather than take responsibility for a decision. Look at the numbers long enough until your intuition makes a decision.

  19. D-Rome Says:

    All the rage these days in the advanced stats world is probabilities.

    One day we’re all going to hear “Sure, he’s thrown three interceptions today but his throwing velocity and and launch angle on that pass were right on the money. He should keep doing that!”

  20. JK Says:

    Realistic……here’s a list of all the SuperBowl winning QBs whom no one was absolutely sure could win a SuperBowl until they did:

    1) Everys SuperBowl winning QB

  21. realistic-optimistic Says:

    @JK, are you suggesting Trask has a chance??

  22. Andrew Fish Says:

    I’m sorry but those 2 throws to Evans were actually not in stride especially the second throw. The throw to Godwin was dangerous and Godwin did a great job using his body to shield the catch.

    Mayfield is doing decent/average because of Evans and Godwin. just look at his stats to his other WR’s.

    Mayfield is on pace for a career year yet he is middle of the pack on most stats. Playing behind an oline 10th best in the league at allowing pressure at 19.5%.

  23. JK Says:

    Realistic……sure why not. Gotta start by winning a job first. Baby steps

  24. realistic-optimistic Says:

    I’ll believe any starter on the Bucs has earned their job when Bowles stops trotting out Ryan Neal and JTS.

  25. JK Says:

    Realistic: yo boy couldn’t even make QB2 under Arians. Ya might wanna pick another hill to die on

  26. realistic-optimistic Says:

    He’s not my boy. But neither is Baker. I want a swing at a rookie QB next year. Not interested in overpaying Mayfield for what I’ve seen on the field this year. Sorry, he’s not it.

  27. realistic-optimistic Says:

    Talk about dying on a hill. You choose the Baker hill to die on? lol

  28. JK Says:

    Realistic: sure, I’ve already witnessed him going into Heinz field and winning a playoff game, and then he went to Arrowhead and was great in the divisional round
    So, yeah
    You on the other hand are writing checks that only Bucs losses can cash. Cool

  29. realistic-optimistic Says:

    lol, and I saw Joe Namath take down Shula’s Colts. Let’s focus on current events.

  30. Oz Len Says:

    This is for all noodles who say Mayfield doesn’t have a strong arm, I hope Joe doesn’t delete it because it has a link but here is the headline. Baker Mayfield’s overthrown Hail Mary is the longest pass ever recorded in an NFL game.

  31. JK Says:

    Realistically, he’s the same scrappy mfer that you’re witnessing today; except ALL THE WAY BACK IN 2020 his best wideout was Juice Landry

  32. Oz Len Says:

    This is for the guys who say Mayfield doesn’t have a strong arm. Joe won’t let me post the link but heres the text, you can look this up.

    “There has been much debate over which quarterback in the NFL would win a throwing contest. Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, who says he can throw 75-83 yards, is an obvious answer, and Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen is also in the conversation.

    It’s a third quarterback, however, who has the longest pass ever recorded in game — and it happened in Week 14.

    According to Pro Football Focus, Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield made NFL history throwing an incomplete Hail Mary pass that was over 70 yards on Monday night against the Baltimore Ravens.”

  33. JK Says:

    Realistic: it’s a real stretch that BM goes into HOF like Namath, but like Trask getting an opportunity, ya never know

  34. realistic-optimistic Says:

    @Oz, that’s great, but can he hit his WRs? I think he threw a 70 yard bomb to Palmer a few weeks ago. Problem is, Palmer was only 50 yards down the field on the play. Obviously sarcastic, but the point stands. Show me you can complete those bombs (without Mike saving your arse), not that you can throw them.

  35. realistic-optimistic Says:

    @JK, he’s getting an opportunity right now. I’ve said already on this site that Baker has resurrected his career. But he’s still a borderline starter. He’s a younger, less concussed Teddy Bridgewater. I’m not interested in that.

    Draft a QB, put good coaches around him, and hope he pans out.

  36. JK Says:

    Trask is getting an opportunity?? Why?

  37. realistic-optimistic Says:

    No, c’mon man. You know I was talking about Mayfield.

  38. JK Says:

    In all seriousness, TB should most definitely draft a QB as high as possible. That and Baker is good enough to win with, right now, can both be true

  39. realistic-optimistic Says:

    I’m sort of onboard with that idea. But not with a Daniel Jones type of contract. 1-2 years at something under $20 mil per? That sounds reasonable as a bridge for a rookie QB. But I reserve the right to reverse course if Baker implodes down the stretch.

    The other thing is, do we trust Bowles to develop a rookie QB? I absolutely do not.

  40. Seattle Buc Says:

    Jeebs the Honey Bear Says: “Baker has a cannon for an arm”

    There’s video of Brett Favre in a game rifling the ball downfield 25 yards in .72 seconds for an AVERAGE speed of 70.9 mph. However, TOP speed is measured at the release point – balls like bullets lose velocity as they travel – so his speed on that throw was even higher, likely 74 mph. THAT’s a cannon.

    Mayfield has no cannon except here on JBF. I haven’t seen it. A good arm? Sure. But that gets you a cup of coffee in the NFL. The boneyard of bust NFL quarterbacks is littered with cannon arms.

    Indeed, look at highlights of Favre and you’ll be surprised how many passes were beautiful, soft, arching balls.

  41. JK Says:

    Seattle Buc: “beautiful, soft, arching balls”

    Ya just caused wood for the Throbbing Rod Muncher

  42. WyomingJoe Says:

    Since arriving in the NFL, Baker has NEVER had a stable environment in which to develop. Name one successful QB playing in the league today that has had 7 different HCs and 6 different OCs in his first 6 years? The answer is NONE! And before David or Realistic respond with their defeatist attitudes, no, the majority of the time it was not because of his ability. Give him an offensive line and a RB and he’s a Top 7 QB. ALL the best QBs in the League have strong/great O-lines and have the ability to run the ball. Really, I can’t believe that he’s playing as well as he is considering his circumstances.

  43. JK Says:

    Wyoming: we all saw what he was able to accomplish in Cleveland with no wideouts. Loved Juice Landry, he was a dawg but c’mon
    And don’t get me started on OmeJ

  44. realistic-optimistic Says:

    I’m defeatist? lol

    Wyoming, you’re a travelling Baker fan. Spend more time as a Bucs fan and you’ll develop a more realistic perspective on this team.

  45. orlbucfan Says:

    BM sure as hell’s bells is playing better and feister ball than frozen Methuselah12 did last season. Now, if Canales will open up the O throwing game to all his receivers, we have a chance in CA.

  46. Seattle Buc Says:

    LOL @ Oklahoma Sooner/Chief Bakette/WyomingJoe cry about Baki not ever ever having a “stable environment” BWAHAHAHAHA.

  47. Pickgrin Says:

    realistic-optimistic Says:
    “only 7 middle-tier QBs have won a SB”

    Uh – more than 7 – you missed a few.. mostly older guys – maybe you weren’t watching football in the 70s and 80s….
    – Jim Plunkett
    – Joe Theisman
    – Phil Simms
    – Doug Williams
    – Eli Manning

    Even Terry Bradshaw was not really that great of a QB. Yes he won 4 SBs but that was largely due to the quality of players surrounding him – especially on Defense…. (same deal mostly for everyone on this list). Bradshaw was a tough sob though – I’ll give him that.

  48. Chad Stone Says:

    Baker Mayfield does have a cannon! He currently holds the NFL record for the longest in game throw of 70.5 yards. Google it up. Haters keep hating. The chances of you getting a better QB out of this draft in the Bucs draft order would be very slim. I’m not even sure if any of this year’s QBs are going to be a “franchise guy”

  49. Proudbucsfan Says:

    Realistic-optimistic Baker Mayfield brought quite a few traveling fans with him and God forbid anyone says any constructive criticism about Baker they will attack you. He’s got a ways to go before he’s elite. I personally don’t think he’s going to get there and that we should draft a quarterback this draft in my opinion I like that kid Bo Nix the only thing is we also need a new coaching staff Bowles is ruining this team.

  50. realistic-optimistic Says:

    @Pickgrin, yeah I was on the fence about a few of them. Eli and Bradshaw have multiple rings so I gave them the nod. If we add my list and your list we’re up to 12 “middle-tier” QBs. And most of them were attached to extremely good defenses (Bradshaw, Plunkett, McMahon, Dilfer, and Johnson had some of the best defenses ever).

  51. Oneilbuc Says:

    If they bring Baker Mayfield back next year I can promise you it’s going to be a losing season. I still don’t understand why Joe and some of yall bucs fans love these average to below average quarterbacks than get mad when they play bad . The bucs kept Brady one year to late and the crazy part to me is that this organization showed how weak they are last year when they new Brady didn’t want to play for the bucs . He went behind their back to play for the dolphins and they still begged him to come back. To all you Baker Mayfield fans y’all picked the wrong quarterback to be a fan of !! Lol 🤣🤣 because he’s a average quarterback against bad teams and a trash quarterback against good teams good luck to y’all once the bucs done with him it will be team 5 in 7 years lol 🤣🤣!!

  52. Hey captain obvious… Says:

    No QB has ever existed under the parameters that you laid down for a franchise. Congratulations on making your three paragraphs of word puke invalid on your own accord. Go Bucs! Keep building with Baker!

  53. Hey captain obvious… Says:

    Additionally look up the metrics for the longest pass attempted and look up the velocity of his passes. Both are upper echelon and I think one is a record although it was an incompletion, dudes just gotta all click and they seem to be showing signs of improvement and not turning the ball over. Once they start playing complimentary football the wins will increase. All the negativity here is misguided. Paul Brown once stated that football is a game of errors. The team that makes the least, usually wins.

  54. Mike C Says:

    Onelilbuc, you think crab legs is a superbowl QB…… I will pass on you QB assessments.

  55. Rod Munch Says:

    All you have to do is get it in the general area of Mike Evans – and he’ll take care of the rest. That’s why he’s a HOF WR.

  56. Oneilbuc Says:

    Mike C. Jamies better than Baker Mayfield I can tell you that!! Baker Mayfield is just loved by the media that’s why he’s on his 4th team in 6 years. So if you’re a Baker Mayfield fan I definitely wouldn’t want the quarterback you want! Lol 🤣🤣 you and the rest of your Baker maniacs love mediocrey. When Baker plays bad teams he’s average and he couldn’t put up more than 20 points against the Falcons or the Titans. And people keep bringing up the Texans game but when you go back and look at the game the offense got in the red zone because of penalties. That’s why he didn’t have 300 yards passing. And this is the quarterback you want next year? Lol 🤣🤣 watch and see against the 49ers he won’t throw a pick but watch all the 3 and outs the offense will have and fans like you will be saying Baker played good lol 🤣🤣!!

  57. Joe Sloan Says:

    If you care to know the value of Baker Mayfield to the Bucs, listen to Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, his other teammates and coaches. The opinions of ALL these pathetic “experts”….negative Nancies….matter as much as a fart in a tornado.