Panthers waive struggling quarterback Mayfield

NFL

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The Carolina Panthers waived quarterback Baker Mayfield on Monday.

Carolina (4-8) is still in contention in the weak NFC South and will go the rest of the season with Sam Darnold and PJ Walker at quarterback, with Darnold starting Sunday’s road game against the Seattle Seahawks.

The decision to move on from Mayfield was a mutual agreement between the two sides after Mayfield asked for his release, a league source told ESPN.

Mayfield would have been inactive against Seattle had he remained on the roster this week.

With the move, Mayfield will be available on waivers to the other 31 NFL teams. If he goes unclaimed by 4 p.m. ET on Tuesday, he will become an unrestricted free agent.

Among the teams possibly looking to add a veteran quarterback are the San Francisco 49ers, who lost starter Jimmy Garoppolo for the season Sunday to a broken ankle. Rookie Brock Purdy finished the 49ers’ 33-17 victory over the Miami Dolphins.

The Panthers acquired Mayfield in a trade with the Cleveland Browns in July, agreeing to send a conditional 2024 fifth-round draft pick to Cleveland that could have become a fourth had Mayfield, the first pick of the 2018 draft, played 70% of the snaps. That did not happen.

Mayfield won the starting job in training camp after an open competition with Darnold, the third pick of the 2018 draft. He went 1-4 before suffering a high ankle sprain that sidelined him for one game. He remained the backup to Walker while Darnold continued to rehab from a high ankle sprain suffered in the final preseason game.

Mayfield got one other start, after Walker suffered an ankle sprain, and lost, finishing his stint with the Panthers with a 1-5 record. He had a career-low 57.8 completion percentage and threw only six touchdown passes to six interceptions.

Mayfield ranks last in the NFL in Total QBR among qualified quarterbacks with a rating of 18.2. The next closest is Houston Texans quarterback Davis Mills at 29.2.

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