The New Orleans Saints reportedly signed Jameis Winston on Sunday, and now they’re firming up their quarterback room further. The team used a first-round tender on Taysom Hill earlier this offseason, and on Sunday they finalized a deal that will keep him under contract through 2021. Yahoo! Sports reporter Charles Robinson is reporting Hill has agreed to terms on a two-year contract worth $21 million, including $16 million in guaranteed money.
This all comes the day after the Saints moved back into the seventh round of the 2020 NFL Draft to select Mississippi State quarterback Tommy Stevens. The Saints had unloaded their day three picks to move into the end of the third round on Friday, so this came as a bit of a surprise.
Drew Brees is the unquestioned starter in 2020, but his future beyond that is unclear. Head coach Sean Payton said 2020 would be Brees’ last season, but the future Hall of Famer has not confirmed that report. Whether 2020 is the end or not, he does not have much longer in the NFL.
Stevens will get some time to develop, but this is really about Winston vs. Hill. Winston has a much more significant track record for good and for bad. This tweet might sum that up best:
Jameis Winston has completed 10 career passes to Saints players.— Master (@MasterTes) April 26, 2020
Taysom Hill has completed 7.
Winston has considerable upside, but his decision-making leaves a lot to be desired. Hill has shown athleticism as a gadget player, but he’s completed seven of 15 total passes in hi three-year career. He’s been used more as a runner and receiver, with 64 rushes for 352 yards and three touchdowns the past two seasons, and 22 receptions for 238 yards and six touchdowns the past two seasons. The six touchdowns, 19 receptions and 234 receiving yards all came this past season.
It’s hard to project what exactly the Saints plan long-term. If Winston had signed a two-year deal, I could see a clearer competition. They are giving Hill a decent chunk of change and if he did not claim the 2021 starting job, it’d be a sizable sunk cost. Winston seems like a better quarterback than Hill, but the Saints keep on keeping on with the latter, so who knows what 2021 will bring.