Joe Burrow believes Baker Mayfield will find new opportunity: 'Every time we play him, he balls'

Joe Burrow's rise to stardom in Cincinnati coincided with Baker Mayfield's fall from grace in the opposite corner of the state.

Burrow's Bengals are now preparing to face a new franchise quarterback the next time they share the field with the Cleveland Browns. Mayfield, meanwhile, is on the outs, leaving Burrow to assess the situation only with his own experiences as context. Instead of planning on more battles with Mayfield, Burrow is being asked what he thinks is next for his fellow former No. 1 overall pick whose stock is at an all-time low.

"That's a tough situation. He was hurt all last year. Every time we play him, he balls," Burrow said during an appearance on the Full Send Podcast. "First time we played him -- Thursday night during Week 2 of my rookie year -- we lost like 34-30. The next time we played them, I throw for 400 yards. He goes like 25-for-28 with five touchdowns. He went on a two-minute drive, touchdown, they won the game."

The Browns haven't reached the stage Burrow arrived at last season -- the Super Bowl -- but Cleveland owns a decided advantage in bragging rights in the last two years, going a perfect 4-0 against Cincinnati since Burrow arrived. Neither Mayfield or Burrow played in their teams' most recent meeting, an otherwise meaningless Week 18 game in which Case Keenum led the Browns to a 21-16 win over Brandon Allen's Bengals, but when they have squared off, Mayfield's Browns were the better squad.

As Burrow said, Mayfield had plenty to do with those outcomes, too. But none of that matters now, as Cleveland has turned the page to Deshaun Watson. It appears as if it is merely a matter of time before Mayfield heads elsewhere.

Burrow sees both sides of this unique situation. He also knows from experience Mayfield is capable of leading a team to victory, but also understands why Cleveland moved on to Watson.

"I think when you have a guy like Deshaun [Watson], you gotta take a chance at that because he's such a great player," Burrow said. "But Baker will land on his feet. He's a really good player."

With the quarterback carousel halted and Mayfield still on Cleveland's roster, it seems as if the rest of the NFL has yet to agree with Burrow.

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