Browns Pick Baker Mayfield No. 1 in 2018 NFL Draft, Leave Twitter Stunned

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured ColumnistApril 27, 2018

PASADENA, CA - JANUARY 01: Baker Mayfield #6 of the Oklahoma Sooners throws a pass during the 2018 College Football Playoff Semifinal Game against the Georgia Bulldogs at the Rose Bowl Game presented by Northwestern Mutual at the Rose Bowl on January 1, 2018 in Pasadena, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

The Cleveland Browns pegged Baker Mayfield as their quarterback of the future Thursday when they selected him No. 1 overall in the 2018 NFL draft.

In adding what they hope will be a franchise quarterback, the Browns' surprise move led to a lot of reaction on social media:

The reigning Heisman Trophy winner, Mayfield watched his stock surge throughout his senior season with the Oklahoma Sooners.

Over 14 starts, including a Rose Bowl loss to Georgia in the College Football Playoff semifinals, Mayfield completed 70.5 percent of his passes for 4,627 yards, 43 touchdowns and six interceptions.

Pro Football Focus provided some more context behind Mayfield's exceptional campaign: 

Stellar production aside, there were several knocks on Mayfield entering the predraft process, including his 6'1" frame, which has been considered less than ideal considering archetypal pocket passers tend to be taller.

"It angers me when people say that height actually matters because there are guys in the NFL that prove it day in and day out that it doesn't," Mayfield told the New York Post's Steve Serby. "If you can pick up and throw a ball, you can. And if you can win games, you can."

Mayfield was also circled as a potential character risk.

In February 2017, the 23-year-old was arrested on charges of public intoxication, disorderly conduct, resisting arrest and fleeing. Nine months later, he drew the critics' ire when he grabbed his crotch and appeared to yell "f--k you" toward Kansas Jayhawks players during a 41-3 win.

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"Everyone wants to portray [me] as a bad boy, the Johnny Manziel stuff," Mayfield said, per NFL.com's Chase Goodbread. "I love the game of football. There's no doubt about that. I'm an emotional player. I'll do anything it takes to win. I love being around my teammates, leading and having responsibilities. It is what it is. If I paid too much attention to it, I'd be focusing on the wrong things."

According to Yahoo Sports' Jordan Schultz, Mayfield did his best to shed that stigma throughout the pre-draft process: 

Mayfield's fiery disposition may have caused some hesitancy in scouting circles, but the Browns were comfortable enough with it to tab him as a foundational piece of their future.

And with Tyrod Taylor in the fold for a year to serve as a bridge, the pressure won't be on Mayfield to perform right away. 

Rather, he can sit back and learn the ropes before the Browns hand him the reins full time as the franchise prepares to turn a corner. 

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