Fri. Jun 21st, 2024
NFL: Preseason-Pittsburgh Steelers at Tampa Bay Bucs
Kim Klement Neitzel-USA TODAY Sports

In Tampa Bay’s first preseason game Baker Mayfield kicked off the scoring for Tampa Bay’s preseason with a touchdown pass.

The Bucs may have fallen to the Pittsburgh Steelers in their preseason opener, but losses can still brew positives. There is no position group with more eyes and criticism hitting them than Tampa Bay’s quarterback room. Against the Steelers, fans finally got the opportunity to watch Baker Mayfield versus Kyle Trask play out in real time.

Tampa Bay’s 2021 second-round pick finished with six completions, 99 yards, and an interception.

Baker Mayfield finished nearly perfect on his passes, completing eight of nine. Mayfield’s eight completions went for an underwhelming 63 yards, but they were capped off with a touchdown.

Neither Baker Mayfield nor Kyle Trask spent time on the field with the players who Bucs fans will be cheering for on Sundays this season and neither passer’s night was awe inspiring, however there was still a palpable difference in their performances.

Stats aside, Trask played the game at a much different pace than Baker Mayfield. Mayfield was perfectly content to take underneath passes, throw the ball short and wait for his moments. Kyle Trask spent much more time attacking the defense, with fluctuating success.

A not so insignificant notion this camp has been the emphasis placed on turnovers. Protection of the ball is paramount for these passers. Kyle Trask played as if he was trying to show the world what he could do, while Baker Mayfield simply played within the system.

If Dave Canales is looking for the quarterback who plays that specific brand of football, Baker Mayfield may look the part.

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