Pardon that awful pun, but Mayhew's poker-room demeanor is present when he answers questions about the recent arrests of two young players,
As general manager of the Lions, Mayhew's style is to play it close to the vest when it suits the franchise's best interests, and to put the cards on the table - some of them, anyway - when necessary.
Answering questions about Fairley and Leshoure was necessary Thursday at Mayhew's annual pre-draft press conference.
A lot of things come with the territory of being general manager of a sports franchise. On a day when the main topic was supposed to be roster tweaking and team building with the draft a week away, that territory included the behavior – misbehavior, really – of two young players.
It didn't take long for the subject to come up.
Six questions into the session, Mayhew was asked a general question about the impact a draft prospect's marijuana use would have on his draft status.
After three follow-up questions on the issue, Mayhew was asked specifically about any discussions he has had with Fairley and Leshoure since their arrests in separate incidents.
(Actually, I think asking questions about drug use is habit-forming. Asking one leads to asking more. Hey, I admit to being a repeat offender when it comes to drug questions.)
"I sat down and talked to Mikel and Nick in the last couple of weeks," Mayhew said Thursday. "I had some really good dialogue with both those guys. It's unfortunate - disappointing. It's frustrating.
"It's very frustrating, but we had a good talk about it. The league will handle it later in terms of discipline for those guys, but I think they understand what the expectation is going forward."
Both players were rookies last year.
Leshoure was arrested twice in separate incidents in western Michigan. Fairley was arrested on April 3 in Mobile, Alabama, where he lives in the offseason.
Both players are participating in the Lions' official offseason workout program, which began Monday at the team's headquarter facilities in Allen Park.
Culbreath's arrest didn't get much notice. He was a seventh-round draft pick and spent all of his rookie season on the reserve/injured list because of a health issue.
A lot more was made of the arrests of Fairley and Leshoure, which is understandable.
Fairley was a first-round draft pick last year. Leshoure was a second-round pick who made a big impression early in camp and was being heavily counted on to upgrade the running game until he went out with an Achilles early in camp.
The reaction was across the spectrum, with some suggesting that Fairley and Leshoure should be released because of the negative impact their actions had on the team.
I understand that people have different views on smoking pot. What all players have to understand - Fairley and Leshoure in this instance - is that they lay themselves open to public scrutiny and discipline from the NFL for breaking the league's rules.
In terms of discipline, Leshoure is likely to get a four-game suspension. It is doubtful Fairley will be suspended.
At the end of Thursday's session, which lasted about 20 minutes, Mayhew was asked about stressing the importance of the players' behavior going forward in his talks with them.
"We don't want to see that happen again," he said. "It's a big-picture discussion about everything - about how their actions impact everybody else.
"The point I tried to make with both of those guys was, when
"We're standing here talking not about the draft and not about our plans going forward and our bright future and what we're going to do. We're talking about those guys' behavior off the field.
"We're all talking about that now. I wanted to make sure those guys understand that."