Lavonte David Explains How Baker Mayfield Fit Right In With Bucs

May 6th, 2024

How Bucs welcomed Baker Mayfield.

Apparently, the national image of Baker Mayfield was pretty poor.

Joe didn’t pay much attention to how Mayfield was portrayed by the Fourth Estate mainly because Joe is hyper-focused on the Bucs.

You would think by word of mouth teammates or ex-teammates of Mayfield would discuss Mayfield with other NFL players, specifically Bucs players. If they did, word didn’t get to Bucs linebacker icon Lavonte David.

Last week David did a sitdown with Rich Eisen which still surprises Joe. David is a laid-back, chill if not shy dude. David doing a TV show? In person? Really?

Even more surprising is that David seemed relaxed and comfortable and might have delivered the best interview of his career.

Mayfield was in Los Angeles for the Tom Brady roast held last night. So David dropped in on Eisen.

All kinds of Bucs chatter was discussed. Eisen wanted to know what David thought of Mayfield and what his reaction was when the Bucs signed Mayfield. David said he had no idea what to expect and could only go by the image of Mayfield painted by national NFL broadcast partners.

It wasn’t good.

Lavonte David: From the outside, you never [knew] what you were going to get from Baker if you didn’t know him personally.

Rich Eisen: So he came in with a little bit of a reputation?

David: Yeah, of course. This was just from what the media said about him and all of that stuff. But when you finally get to meet somebody — you never want to judge a book by its cover. You actually get meet him and get a chance to talk to him, you understand why he is the person he is. I’m not [saying this] because he is my teammate. When you see him, the way he works and the way he acts around the locker room. To see how people gravitate to him, I kind of like opened my eyes. ‘You know man, you know Bake, he’s one of the guys. He’s cool’ He wanted everyone to accept him for who he is. Watching him compete on the field, that’s what you love to see. Baker is genuinely a humble, genuinely a nice guy. Seeing the way he takes care of people around him. Taking care of the offensive line and the work he puts in, I can see why he is the competitive guy he is.

David later added he thought Mayfield had the success he had last season because David and other Bucs basically told him not to be Tom Brady, but just be the best Baker Mayfield that he can be.

“All we asked for him is just to be himself,” David said. “We know he can be a great football player — he was a Pro Bowler this past year.

“We know he can be a great football player. We know he can get us to where we want to be as a football team. All we told him was to be himself and no matter what, we’ve got your back.”

David added that is how the Bucs locker room is: a welcoming locker room as long as players be themselves and bust their tails.

David noted that the vibe in the locker room is what Bucco Bruce Arians started and was later “enhanced” by Brady.

“Everyone [should just] do their job and be themselves and they can win football games,” David said. “That’s basically what we told Baker, and he got us to the second round of the playoffs.”

Now the goal  for the Bucs is to add to the foundation they build last year and get farther down the NFL playoffs road.

17 Responses to “Lavonte David Explains How Baker Mayfield Fit Right In With Bucs”

  1. Crickett Baker Says:

    I thought it was interesting That LVD was invited to THE Roast. The media has not mentioned any Bucs being there at all.

  2. BUCS TRUCK Says:

    Great story Joe. Thanks.

  3. MadMax Says:

    Nice. Thank you Mr. David….real recognize real. Im so glad we dont have to worry about our QB position for the next 5 years….we’re good.

  4. SenileSenior Says:

    Lavonte confirms my speculation also, namely that BA initiated the culture turnaround and Brady took it to another level the first year he graced us with his presence.

  5. Leopold Stotch Says:

    Maybe Lavonte is preparing for life after football with this interview. I’m wondering if he always was comfortable, but just wanted to keep his head down and focus on football. Perhaps he’s looking to branch out, in different venues, post playing. Or it could be he needs to open up more to a national audience so that he can get HoF recognition that he deserves. He’s been so quiet, that not a lot of people acknowledge his greatness, plus unfortunately, being on really bad teams.

  6. heyjude Says:

    Lavonte is a a great guy too. What he said about Baker is how everyone watching him sees him too. Baker is humble and genuinely a good guy along with Lavonte.

  7. Joe in Michigan Says:

    Juan, aka “Trask To The Future” probably doesn’t like this article.

  8. bob in valrico Says:

    It has been reported that LVD wants to start a ministry upon retirement. IMO,
    LVD taking advantage of opportunities to open up will aid him in his next career,
    which will probably include more public speaking in the way of sermons, impromptu questions, and answers from people that seek guidance. Not anxious
    to see him leave the Bucs, but I do wish him well when he decides to hang up his cleats.

  9. Jeremy in Lutz Says:

    You don’t hear of many LVD interviews, I’m glad it’s a winning culture in their locker room now.ive been a fan all my life and I was born in ’81. I have witnessed a lot of bad BUCS football. Our draft got me perty excited for this coming year. LVD can’t have much left in him, he is in his mid thirties. Really hope he retires a BUC. LFG!!!!!

  10. JUAN Says:

    “you know Bake, he’s one of the guys. He’s cool”

    You forgot “moxie”, Lavonte (and Joe). Never forget “moxie”! And .500!

  11. Dave Pear Says:

    LVD is a great guy. HOF. And also probably already a better coach than the genius who has the head job.

  12. Marky Mark Says:

    The National media turned on Baker when Stephen A, a life long Giants fan, pinned OBJ,s poor performance on Baker ignoring him. Rather than tell the truth which was OBJ had regressed due to injuries and age and was just not getting open. After that all the media followed the loud mouthed pied piper.

  13. Oneilbuc Says:

    I still don’t understand why y’all think Baker is a great quarterback lol 🤣🤣! He had a average season last year and most of yall forgot about the 6 game losing streak and 5 of those games Baker was not good. But I guess y’all think garbage yards means he played good the whole game. The 49ers he should of had 5 picks. The first Lions game he should of had 4 picks and the second saints game he almost threw 3 picks and I’m not talking about when the defense just making good plays. Those passes were thrown right to those defenders. As a bucs fan I don’t see greatness in Baker Mayfield and Baker has no more excuses this year and being in a new offense is not a good enough excuse like people love to say . Justin Fields had it way worse than Baker Mayfield ever had it when it comes to coaches and weapons and a lot of people say he sucks. But when Baker Mayfield plays bad it’s always about his coaches and situations and having different OCs !!

  14. Truth be Told Says:

    Said it from the beginning. The Bucs are Lucky that Baker fell into their lap after T12 retired. He is a Top 10-15 QB and can take us as far as our Pass Rush starved Team can go. If this team has a Pass Rush consistently this year watch out. And Oh Yeah, a running game too. Lol

  15. drdneast Says:

    Baker got a lot of bad press and blow back from fans when he signed a pack of huge endorsement deals, namely the Progressive TV ads. They thought he was being given to much to soon without earning it. That may have been true, but who is going to turn down millions of dollars just because you haven’t been in the league long enough. Haters were just envious. Besides, the commercials were funny.

  16. Larrd Says:

    Baker’s awesome, O’Neil buc. It’s why he gets invited to star-studded celebrity roasts out in Hollywood.

    I remember how awesome Baker is every time you post. Thank you!

  17. Joe in Michigan Says:

    Juan: I hate to spoil your false narrative with facts, but the Bucs were over .500 last year.