Managing A Possible Regression

April 8th, 2024

“I will handle it.”

Look, Joe is on record saying it would be no surprise if Baker Mayfield regresses a bit this season. That’s not a knock on Mayfield in any way — though Joe is convinced some will incorrectly take it that way.

Mayfield last year had a career year leading the Bucs to the playoffs and damn near getting the Bucs to the NFC title game.

Often after a guy has some regression after a career year. That’s not to say Mayfield will have a setback. It’s just possible if not likely. You know, regression to the mean?

This is what Nick Shook of thinks will happen. The key here whether Mayfield can manage the regression.

BURNING QUESTION: Will Baker Mayfield find the same success without play-caller Dave Canales?

Love him or hate him, you have to admit: Mayfield was excellent in 2023. He put up career numbers and essentially willed the Buccaneers to the playoffs. Sure, sometimes that required him to target Mike Evans roughly 20 times per game, but it worked. Now, though, Canales is in Carolina, and Mayfield is working with former Sean McVay lieutenant Liam Coen, which means we can’t quite count on the same return at this point.

Look, Joe hopes Mayfield has another career year. Joe’s not banking on that. If he can still throw for 3800+ yards and 25+ touchdowns, the Bucs should be in good shape.

With new Bucs offensive coordinator Liam Coen already saying he’s going to play Chris Godwin more in the slot than his predecessor, which is where Godwin balls out, that alone gives Joe a hunch that Mayfield will be fine, career year or not.

52 Responses to “Managing A Possible Regression”

  1. Truth be Told Says:

    The Bucs are lucky to have him. Let’s think about an improved running game and a better Pass defense that actually gets sacks and off the field on 3rd down are going to make it easier this year for Baker to bake. Go Bucs!

  2. geno711 Says:

    The Bucs have been a superior pass blocking squad. No one ever seemed to give Joe Gilbert or Harold Goodwin credit for that success.

    As weak as those guys were on getting good run blocking results, they were just as strong on getting good pass blocking results.

    Some of the positive results for Mayfield are certainly tied to their successes, just as likely regression will be tied to a less competent group of coaches coaching those pass blocking schemes.

    We will see, but I am hoping we are a better run blocking team this year.

  3. Farmer Says:

    I don’t expect a regression, quite the opposite actually.

    As long as he stays healthy, which is a genuine concern with how little he seems to care about his physical safety, then I expect Baker to improve a lot.

    I’ve said it a million times not but Baker has never had stability which is key to success, everyone keeps comparing Baker to average QBs when his career has been anything but average.

    I don’t expect him to throw 40+ TDS, 5000yrds and be in the conversation for MVP but I wouldn’t be all that shocked if he did

  4. Lt. Dan Says:

    Disagree with you Joe. Mayfield will essentially be in the same offense for the second year in a row except for the verbiage. He will still be chucking the pill to Evans, Godwin, Palmer and White. I think a better center and running back will be scooped up in the spring selection show. And….wait for it….without a decent pass rush and maybe a regression in the secondary without CD III, I expect the Bucs will need to put up a bunch of points to win games. = Better year for one, Baker Mayfield.

  5. Boss Says:

    I just hope he learned to make his reads before the snap. If he has learned this we will be good.

  6. Todd Says:

    Baker’s operating capital is his self-confidence.

    Now his confidence is not just ‘self’, but it’s turbo-charged by all parties within the Bucs organization.

    Baker will not transgress…but barring injury, he’ll post a career year and the Bucs win the Super Bowl!

    Heard it here first!

  7. geno711 Says:

    Team Passing stats since Gilbert and Goodwin came to the Bucs.

    2019 1st in passing yards, 22nd in sacks allowed.
    2020 3rd in passing yards, 4th in least sacks allowed.
    2021 1st in passing yards, 1st in least sacks allowed.
    2022 2nd in yards, 1st in least sacks allowed.
    2023 12th in passing yards, tied for 12th in least sacks allowed.

  8. geno711 Says:

    In some ways may have already taken our regression with Baker last year in the passing game.

  9. Beeej Says:

    “Boss Says:
    April 8th, 2024 at 7:24 am
    I just hope he learned to make his reads before the snap. If he has learned this we will be good.”

    You keep SAYING that, without any evidence to justify it, merely your disdain of Mayfield

  10. ir8oldman Says:

    We’ll (The Bucs will) be better as Canales was a noob at play-calling. The replacement (L Coen) has experience in this, so less likely to see 3 consecutive runs up the middle for our first drive. I Think Baker’ll be better.

  11. Joe in Michigan Says:

    Yes, Boss is the boy that cried wolf, everything was negative even though the Bucs made the playoffs and won a playoff game. I had some poster tell me the other day that the Bucs playoff win doesn’t count because the Eagles were “about as good as Liberty University”.

  12. Joe in Michigan Says:

    Will the Bucs improve their line? Will Coen be a better OC than Canales? Will they get another good WR and TE in the Draft? There’s a decent chance Mayfield will be as good or better in 2024, if things fall right.

  13. Capt.Tim Says:

    I dunno. Add a running game. And few interior linemen that actually know how to block- meybe our previously crippled offense will improve.
    Hard to imagine it wouldnt.

    I know Jason Licht is busy patting himself on the back, but meybe he could actually improve our lousy line and last place run game.
    Connor Williams and Dalton Risner are just sitting around, waiting on a call.
    Those two are actually good Olinemen.

    If you have time to call Randy Gregory, why not call these guys.

    Giving Mayfield a lil help would probably keep the ball moving forward

  14. Capt.Tim Says:

    Its funny. I am so disgusted with our interior line and running game,
    That I often forget how useless our TEs were last year.

    Geez, seems like theres a ton of room to improve.

  15. Marky Mark Says:

    A regression is what happened to Depervert missing almost 2 years. When Baker is healthy he has only progressed. This career year and the contract will allow Baker to sit if injured. Dewimp sits with a sore earlobe. My take is Baker did well in spite of Canoles not because of him. BaKer was held back as Dave tried to “establish the run” with a glorified slot receiver. Then Dave panicked and turned to Bakes who would have had 11 wins if the D could have held a lead against Falcons 1 and Texans. Ironically Stefanski did the opposite and let Baker sling the rock and build up a big lead in the first half. Then the big backs ground the clock out. I think Coen wil! Do that.

  16. BucsFan Says:

    baker will play better this year

  17. George R Says:

    I hope not. Th e Bucs barely won nine games with Baker having a career year. How many wins can we expect if he regresses.

  18. Hodad Says:

    BS Joe no excuses. He should be better having a year under his belt with the same team.

  19. Defense Rules Says:

    Every year stands on its’ own merit. A tweak here (improve the OLine), a tweak there (add a complementary RB & TE), and voila, the offenses’ points production COULD improve dramatically. We’ve seen it happen here before (2020) and it can happen again.

    We KNOW what fixes are needed; it’s just a question of finding the right pieces at prices we can afford. Most of the upgrades will likely happen via our draft, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Bucs add 1 or 2 more players via free agency before Game 1 kicks off.

  20. Beeej Says:

    We also started 5 rookies last year

  21. heyjude Says:

    Baker will be even better this season.

  22. JD Still Says:

    The best indicator of future performance is what a player has done in the past , if a player has been consistent in the past , he will probably be consistent in the future , if he has been inconsistent in the past , that’s probably what you will get in the future.

  23. TF Says:

    I think everybody needs to stop ignoring the elephant in the room and a bigger key to our success or lack of. Our Defense. Specifically the pass defense that was horrendous last year. We were 59 yards away from being the worst pass defense in the league. Interesting enough RIGHT behind us, separated by ONLY 17 yards were 2 other playoff teams. The Eagles and Lions. So not to be a downer but ALL the stars aligned to where we were lucky enough to get BOTH those teams in the playoffs last year. That allowed Baker to have a chance. And he took advantage of it. Also, Like it or not Davis was part of the solution not the problem last year and what concerns me is the fact we play against some AMAZING QBs this year out of division. Buckle up. We need to lay to our full potential and avoid mistakes.

  24. Shane Callahan Says:

    If they improve the IOL and run game, he should be even better.

  25. DavidBigBucsFan99 Says:

    Let me see, he regressed every other year after having a good statistical season and last year he had a pretty decent year all a while playing poorly in the first half of too many games. He could have had a great year last year if it wasn’t for that. So after 6 years in the league he still plays so poorly at times I think there’s a pretty good chance he will regress. I hope not but from what I’ve seen it’s there for his taking. All the fanbooboos don’t see that of course

  26. mark2001 Says:

    Only two significant reasons for Baker to regress… Lack of Canales, and an overabundance of money.

  27. 1#bucsfan Says:

    Only time will tell. He’s got the weapons even with a sus running game he should do fine. Get the defense right. Honestly if the run game can improve I think maybe he has a better year only reason I think that is now he knows everyone on offense. Learning curve for the new offense should be small hopefully. He’s bin in Liam’s system before even tho it wasn’t long but what I’ve heard is it’s similar to canales

  28. TampabayDJ Says:

    Boss is not even a Bucs fan. He comes on this site to talkcrap and has nothing to back it up. He’s an AINTS fan

  29. Cobraboy Says:

    Fix the interior OL and Mayfield could become a great NFL QB.

  30. BA’s Red Pen Says:

    If Baker regresses a bit but the young guys improve it will be a wash. Run the ball better play better defense. Barring injury the Bucs will win this garbage division again.

  31. Greg Says:

    It’s not about Baker. I think Baker will be Baker. Gritty. A little erratic. Shockingly good and wtf bad. It’s fun to watch. I am hoping he’s got a better O Line so his pocket stays clean and he has a run game. He’s not Brady and that’s fine. No one else is either. I think they’ll be fine.

  32. Bucben61 Says:

    If the bucs sure up the oline I’m pretty confident that what we got from Baker last year was his floor

    I keep saying it and time will eventually prove it and that is a franchise QB landed in our laps last year

  33. Ugo Says:

    I expect Baker to have a similar or better year without Canales calling the play. That being, Canales was the perfect guy to have matched up with Baker last season as he helped tremendously in Baker getting his confidence back, and Baker’s confidence his probably one of his biggest assets. He is a good qb with the tools to succeed but his 2021 and 2022 seasons were marred, not just with injury but with hesitation. Canales was instrumental in Baker getting his mental and his mojo back so I will never badmouth him.

  34. MelvinJunior Says:

    Yep. Those “BakerBois” will completely, LOSE THEIR MINDS. 💯

  35. Dave Pear Says:

    Baker will make last year look mediocre as long as Liam ignores Todd.

  36. Terry Says:

    Huge Baker supporters. No clue what you are talking about.–Joe

  37. Beeej Says:

    The team (and Baker) was steadily improving all season, see no reason for that to change

  38. SlyPirate Says:

    “Without Play-Caller Canales”

    Oh no! 19th ranked offense. 32nd ranked rush.

  39. Rick culler Says:

    I’m on the record saying mayfield will have a better year. Canales actually hindered mayfield as Canales was new as a play caller, and screwed up a lot. Coen has more experience and mayfield has more time with his soldiers and this year they are going to war…. mayfield will break all his records this year and win a superbowl 2024 is his year…. watch as they slaughter the chiefs. When you figure out I’m right, you can give me a job writing for you and I will hang up my clippers and stop being a barber…. let’s go….

  40. Buc1987 Says:

    George R …about 4-5 wins.

  41. Seattle Bucs Fan Says:

    The fact that Baker had so many offensive coordinators and head coaches is not a detriment. It’s a positive and I expect him to do even better this year.

  42. Buckeyebuckchuck Says:

    -Highly doubt he regresses. 2018 runner-up OROY. 2019 Baker got cooked in the Kitchens offense. (Like that?) 2020 Stefanski offense played to his strengths, 2021 was starting out the same until his shoulder fell off..2022…everybody fails in Carolina. 2023 is more the norm. And actually i agree 2024 should be better because no rookie play caller holding the offense back.

  43. Buckeyebuckchuck Says:

    Nick Shook is a cur ball with an opinion .He had Trevor Lawrence borderline top ten most of the year until he realized…old boy regressed last year..Shocker!

  44. Dave Pear Says:


    Football knowledgeable fans know Baker is the Bucs best option and was instrumental in bringing the Bucs from 4-7 to 10-9.

    Get the real interior OL to keep him cleaner and open up his run game and he will flourish even more.

    Of course you might prefer the future Insurance Broker who’s been holding a clipboard for theee years, so you can “see what the Bucs have” when the professionals have seen him and determined him a clipboard holder.

  45. Rod Munch Says:

    “Love him or hate him, you have to admit: Mayfield was excellent in 2023. He put up career numbers and essentially willed the Buccaneers to the playoffs.”

    WOW, that is one of the most fake news takes I’ve ever heard.

    In reality, with two games left in the season, and the Bucs needing a win to get into the playoffs, Baker completely collapsed with his two worst games of the year, and did everything he possibly could to lose the game vs the Panthers. It was Bowles defense that bailed out Baker and got them into the playoffs. Then, in the playoffs, with everything on the line in Detroit, two minutes left, the entire nation watching, every kids dream – Baker again failed the team and collapsed in the moment.

    Baker was 18th in QBR and the Bucs were 20th in scoring – he had a middling season. And there’s nothing wrong with that, you can win with a middling QB and a top 10 defense (which the Bucs had), but the fake news narrative about Baker carrying the team is as big a nonsense as it gets.

    That is also why you should be worried about any sort of regression. Any sort of slippage and you’re now talking about a QB into the 20s in QBR and in the mid-20s in points, and when you have that, you’re looking to replace your QB.

    Instead the Bucs need to be hoping Baker is going to improve to justify that contract, otherwise it’s going to look like a terrible deal at the end of the year.

  46. 74 Bucs Fan Says:

    ‘23 – Baker has all new coaches and players around him, a first time OC, a player switching from RT to LT, and player moving from LG to RT, a rookie RG, and a hole filling LG. Yeah – he should regress. 🤦

  47. Booger Says:

    As long as he stays healthy, and just makes it through the entire year without missing any games, then Baker will be even better than what he was last season. If they have a great draft overall, with either Barton or JPJ anchoring the class, after being taken with their first pick. And, if Cohen can/will only speed things up with some tempo and pace. I wasn’t all that impressed with Baker, in the first place. He looked pretty bad a lot more than pretty good for the most part, of the majority of games. So I think he can do better. If the “injury gods” shine down on the Bucs again, for next season.

  48. Beeej Says:

    Rod, you are like a tape loop spouting his QBR and the Carolina game. 9 people out of 10 couldn’t tell you wtf qbr IS, and his ribs were so bad he shouldn’t have been on the field for that game, as he couldn’t throw the ball, but Todd was afraid to start Trask in that all-important game,. Find something else

  49. AlstottRocks Says:

    Am I the only one who saw C. Otton achieve some clutch plays towards the tail end of the season and in the playoffs? I think if Otton continues to grow and Baker continues to utilize him more, then Baker will be in for a huge year and we can make it deeper into the playoffs and maybe SB bound!

  50. Debbie⁴ Says:

    You guys act like the Bucs win or lose according to one player, the quarterback. It takes a team to win the superbowl. The OL has to to thier job for the play makers to advance. The playmakers need to do thier job to move the chains and score. The qb is not the only one involved to win. No one can win without a defense. Who makes or breaks a win? The defense. So I know it takes a team. The team needs to gel, and believe in themselves. That includes coaches, trainers and PT, dietary, and yea the janitors and groundskeepers. Everyone counts. Everyone has to have the mindset. Baker will not regress, his mindset is to win. Everyone needs to work together to win. I believe they will. # Go Bucs!

  51. Marky Mark Says:

    Funny JD my stock broker says the opposite. Past performance is no guarantee of future performance. Look at DeCriminal Watson. His last full non injured season was almost a half decade ago. He had great sellable stats yEar his agent used to full advantage. A deeper dive shows he set a near record in yards lost due to sacks and was 4-12. The real superstar here is the agent who ran circles around Brain Dead Berry. Anything can happen in the NFL. What we know is Baker never quits the way DeSaster Watson does and Licht put in an out clause.

  52. Oneilbuc Says:

    I just have one question if Baker plays bad are you guys are going to say he played bad or give him a bunch of excuses and blame everyone but him ? That’s my question are you going to call it like you see it because every game he’s played bad in you guys blamed everyone one but Baker Mayfield. It’s just a freaking game it ain’t that serious or less you know the guy personal then I understand. But are you guys are to call it like you see it ?