Colin Cowherd on Baker Mayfield’s 1st career NFL start: ‘Don’t tell me Baker played well’

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Colin Cowherd doesn't think Baker Mayfield played well in his first career start for the Cleveland Browns in Oakland. Hear why he needs to see more from the rookie QB.

COLIN COWHERD: Here's the country we live in now in America today. It is a country based on affirmation, not information. Everybody wakes up in the morning with their sports, with their politics, with an opinion. And regardless of what happens, you're digging your feet in and that's your opinion. You will not let anybody sway you. That's just the world we live in. We live in now an affirmation society, not an information society. Just tell me what-- we even watch channels they'll tell me what I want to hear. This channel will tell me what I want to hear, not what you need to hear.

So in Ohio, home of the Cleveland Browns, in Oklahoma, where Baker Mayfield played, you woke up in the morning, it didn't matter what he did. It's going to be amazing. Pick six, somebody else's fault. Loss, somebody else's fault. Referees cost us. Really? Referees threw the four turnovers. Referees threw the pick six. OK, I was just checking out. He had a lot of yards. Oh, Baker Mayfield had a lot of yards? Are you watching the NFL in 2018? Yards are really easy to come by.

But you know what's never easy to come by in the NFL? And it never will be easy to come by in the NFL? Wins. And Baker's own one, as a starter. And by the way good luck, Ravens are next up. Schedule gets hard now. Don't tell me Baker played well. In the history of the National Football League, there has never been a single time that a quarterback, rookie or not, commits four turnovers and people say, wow, what a performance. Let me tell you something Ohio, your standards are pretty low if four turnovers you're satisfied with.

I didn't think he played that well. He's clearly capable of being an NFL quarterback, what I predicted in college. He's good enough to be an NFL quarterback. He's an accurate thrower of the football. But even Hue Jackson after the game said basically, quote, obviously turnovers were the difference in the game. Hue Jackson didn't say officials were there for the loss. Didn't blame his defense. Yes, some of his balls were dropped. Baker Mayfield throws it hard with a lot of spin. He's going to have dropped balls. A couple of years ago Matt Ryan led the NFL in drops. It happens. Get over it.

Mayfield completed 50% and had four turnovers, and you're telling me this morning you thought that was great. Here's the other thing, is that it's pretty obvious in the NFL right now that if you're a young quarterback, Jared Goff, Patrick Mahomes, Mitch Trubisky, having an offensive staff, an offensive coach, is an advantage. We saw Jared Goff with Jeff Fisher. We see it with Sean McVay. Hm. Patrick Mahomes, lighting it up. Andy Reid. Mitch Trubisky, six touchdowns. Mitch Trubisky. We've got Matt Maggi.

By the way, Sam Darnold, defensive head coach. Josh Rosen, rookie, defensive head coach. Josh Allen, Buffalo, defensive head coach. Baker Mayfield, and this is why I said do not run Hue Jackson out of town. He's a smart offensive head coach. That's why Hue Jackson didn't blame the refs. Hue Jackson didn't blame the defense. Hue Jackson didn't blame the receivers. Hue Jackson said, I'm tired of it. This is not acceptable. Four turnovers cost us the game.

Baker Mayfield has the best offensive line of any rookie quarterback. Darnold's is awful. Josh Rosen's is awful. Josh Allen's is awful. I don't count Lamar Jackson, because he's not starting. That's Flacco's team. He also has real weapons. He has an elite wide receiver in his prime, Jarvis Landry. He also had 200 yards rushing yesterday, so he's got a better offensive line. The only of the rookies that has an elite receiver in his prime, and he's got three legitimate running backs. Nick Chubb, who I said before the year could be Rookie of the Year, is really good. Carlos Hyde is really good. Duke Johnson, nice little player. Those are three legit NFL running backs. The Jets would like to have one.

Listen, if you wake up in the morning and you've already made your decision on political stuff and sports stuff, you're not into information. You're into affirmation. If you want to talk about yards, Derek Carr had 440 against the Cleveland defense. That Cleveland defense is real. That Raider defense is crap. That Raider defense is bad. So Baker Mayfield on three extra days rest had more turnovers, and those are the difference between winning and losing. I don't think Aaron Rodgers has ever had a four turnover game. Had more turnovers than all the other rookie quarterbacks with fewer weapons combined. And he also faced the worst defense of all the rookie quarterbacks yesterday.

So I got news for you. Warren Jackson didn't have a turnover. Josh Rosen didn't have a turnover. Sam Darnold faced the Jags, didn't have a turnover. But Baker Mayfield had four. But you woke up in the morning. You just made a decision. A pick six is not his fault. The officiating-- nobody in a striped shirt committed a turnover. Baker had four. He's not going to be a bust, but by the end of this year, if you're bragging about yards today with Baker Mayfield, having 297 yards. If he didn't have more yards than Josh Allen, Josh Rosen, and Sam Darnold, I'd be worried.

Because he has a legitimate o-line. He has a legitimate star receiver in his prime. He has legitimate running backs. He has an offensive coach. Between Hue Jackson and Todd Haley, those are veteran offensive minds. I don't think Baker's a bust. I never did. But I don't wake up in the morning not willing to go, what am I really seeing? What I saw was an injury riddled offense led by Baker Mayfield. He'll be fine, but you got to be honest about it. Can't be blaming refs this morning. Can't be blaming receivers. They didn't commit four turnovers.