New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton said that quarterback Drew Brees will suit up for just one more season in the Crescent City. Does Payton already have a quarterback succession plan in place?
After being upset in a Wild Card Playoff to the Minnesota Vikings, the New Orleans Saints had a difficult situation to assimilate in the quarterback department.
All three signal-callers, Drew Brees, Teddy Bridgewater and Taysom Hill, were free agents at the start of the 2020 league year in March, and the Saints could keep two, but not all three, of them because of their salary cap hits.
At the time, Brees’ future was in question, Bridgewater would be a coveted signal-caller in free agency and Hill believed he could be an NFL starter as well.
Brees re-signed with the Saints, Bridgewater ended up signing with the division-rival Carolina Panthers and New Orleans placed a first-round tender on Hill. The first-round tender meant that if a team wanted Hill and the Saints did not match that team’s offer for the restricted free agent, New Orleans would receive a first-round pick.
So, New Orleans kept Brees and Hill and may end up selecting a quarterback in the 2020 NFL Draft, and this rumor became relevant as Sean Payton discussed Brees’ future.
Payton also said that the team will have to carry three quarterbacks on the active roster, meaning that Brees will start and Hill will still participate in many different roles in the offense.
The head coach added that the Saints view versatile quarterback Taysom Hill as a starting quarterback in this league, signaling that Hill could be the heir apparent and mentor for a younger quarterback who will be groomed in this system.
These comments from Payton do not 100 percent confirm that Brees will hang it up, since he has a two-year contract and a good amount of dead money accumulating after the 2020 season.
With the Saints possibly going for a wide receiver or linebacker in the first round of the draft, it’s unlikely that New Orleans will gun for its next franchise quarterback this year, but Payton could be hinting at a successor sooner than experts think.