Baker Mayfield Wears Walking Boot After Ankle Injury; Panthers QB to Have MRI

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IV

CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA - OCTOBER 09: Baker Mayfield #6 of the Carolina Panthers looks to throw the ball during the first quarter against the San Francisco 49ers at Bank of America Stadium on October 09, 2022 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Eakin Howard/Getty Images)
Eakin Howard/Getty Images

Carolina Panthers quarterback Baker Mayfield wore a walking boot on his left foot to his press conference after Sunday's 37-15 loss to the San Francisco 49ers.

Amanda Ferguson @_amandaferguson

Baker Mayfield walking up to the podium in a walking boot.<a href="https://twitter.com/WFMY?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@WFMY</a> <a href="https://t.co/7ycxnURlXr">pic.twitter.com/7ycxnURlXr</a>

Ellis L. Williams @BookofEllis

Panthers QB Baker Mayfield while wearing a walking boot on his left foot said he will get an MRI soon to determine severity of injury.

Steve Reed @SteveReedAP

Baker Mayfield says frustration is the overriding emotion at 1-4 right now. Also indicated he injured his ankle. Doesn’t know the extent of the injury.

Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reported Monday that Mayfield had X-rays after the game and they were negative.

Mayfield completed 20 of 36 passes for 215 yards, zero touchdowns and one interceptions in the loss. Backup PJ Walker finished the game under center for Carolina.

Much of Mayfield's 2021 season was impacted by injury. He played much of the season with a torn labrum in his left shoulder after suffering the injury in Week 2.

Once the Browns were eliminated from playoff contention following a Week 17 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers, they shut the 26-year-old down for the season and he underwent surgery on his shoulder.

"I've continued to lay it out on the line when I haven't been healthy and tried to fight for our guys," Mayfield told reporters. "Now it's time for me to start looking at what's in the best interest of me and my health."

It was a tough year for the Oklahoma product, whose injuries were accompanied by a dip in form. He finished the 2021 season with 3,010 yards, 17 touchdowns and 13 interceptions in 14 games, completing just 60.5 percent of his passes. All four of those statistical categories were worse than what he offered in 2020.

Head coach Kevin Stefanski acknowledged that the injury and the harness Mayfield had to wear to keep his shoulder in place affected his play.

"Throughout this whole thing, we have tried to make the right decision based on all the information available to us," he told reporters. "Constant dialogue with our medical staff, with Baker, and throughout have really felt comfortable based on all that information that he was able to play."

Mayfield clearly wasn't able to play at a high level, though, and the Browns made it clear they didn't see him as the starter going forward once they traded for Deshaun Watson. Mayfield's time in Cleveland was up, and after a lengthy wait, he was ultimately traded to the Panthers.

Mayfield won the starting job over Sam Darnold, though Darnold's own injury means the Panthers would have to turn to Walker if Mayfield misses time—unless Darnold is activated from injured reserve.

Carolina dropped to 1-4 with Sunday's loss and will face the reigning champion Los Angeles Rams next week.