The New Orleans Saints have benefited from incredible quarterback play with Drew Brees under center for many years. With his retirement looming, the organization will need to replace that impact and Taysom Hill and Jameis Winston are the main options.
According to Jay Glazer of The Athletic, it’s ‘no smokescreen’ that Hill will take over the starting quarterback job after Brees retires.
“No smokescreen, he’s the guy. Sean Payton loves him but it’s not just him, the whole team loves him, not just Sean Payton. Watch a Saints game. When he’s in the game, watch the other players on the sideline, watch their reaction. They all get up and stand on the sidelines to watch him. I think Sean was always hoping to unleash him on the league without anyone seeing him before but now we’ve seen it with Lamar Jackson. He’s a bigger Lamar Jackson. No, it’s not a smokescreen. He likes him that much, he’ll be the guy. He’s with the perfect coach for that.”
It shouldn’t be a surprise that Hill is viewed as a long-term quarterback option in the post-Brees era. Remember, Saints head coach Sean Payton has previously given Hill high praise by comparing his potential at quarterback to Steve Young.
The recent public comments Payton has made align with Glazer’s report. In a recent interview with CBS Sports Network, Payton mentioned that Hill ‘has a great chance come in there and became that QB’ when discussing the starting job.
“It gives us a Hall of Fame quarterback playing still at an elite level and then two young prospects we’re excited about, starting with Taysom Hill,” Payton said. “We’ve got a ton of confidence in him and there’s a big reason why he was tendered with a first-round pick and then paid accordingly.”
Regardless, it could be premature to bank on Taysom Hill being the starting quarterback long-term without having the 2020 season unfold. He will need to compete with Jameis Winston on a daily basis and while the former No. 1 pick threw for 30 interceptions last season, he has impressive talent.
Not having to play in such an aggressive offensive system under Bruce Arians could bring the best out of Winston by helping him to become more efficient. With an already established dynamic ability to throw the ball, that could be the perfect learning opportunity for him to take the next step.
There is a legitimate possibility that Jameis Winston isn’t actually an option since he signed a cheap one-year deal. He could learn what he needs from the Saints and then go sign elsewhere to take over a starting quarterback role that simply wasn’t available later in this year’s market.
It’s simply too difficult to project a year into the future in the NFL when so much change occurs. The focus with the Saints is on winning one last Super Bowl with Drew Brees, not what happens with Taysom Hill and Jameis Winston in 2021.
NFL Analysis Network provides news updates and analysis about the New Orleans Saints along with all 32 teams in the league. Find us on social media (Twitter & Facebook) to stay up to date with our content.