Baker Mayfield in August 2021. Aug 29, 2021; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) is shown on the sideline during their game against the Atlanta Falcons at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

After a long and eventful offseason, Baker Mayfield finally found a new team when the Cleveland Browns traded their former No. 1 overall pick to the Carolina Panthers in return for a conditional fifth-round pick.

It will be a new team for Mayfield, but that doesn’t necessarily mean he will be immediately successful in Carolina. Or even that he will start, for that matter.

Even after trading for Mayfield, those within the Panthers organization are maintaining publicly that there will be an open competition for the team’s starting quarterback spot.

Carolina general manager Scott Fitterer reiterated that message on Tuesday. When asked whether Mayfield would be the team’s starting quarterback this fall, Fitterer said “this is an open competition.”

Mayfield is joining current Panthers quarterback Sam Darnold on the Carolina roster, and will presumably compete with him for the starting job this offseason. Darnold started 11 games for the Panthers last season.

While there is a chance an actual competition takes place, the NFL world wasn’t exactly buying the news, reacting with a combination of disdain and disbelief.

The Panthers begin practice on Wednesday, July 27. Whatever happens with the quarterback competition ahead of the 2022 season, it’s going to be fascinating to watch.

[Field Yates on Twitter; photo from Jason Getz-USA Today Sports]