Have the Saints completely mishandled the quarterback position?
Speaking of Hill, Payton’s decision to start him over Payton was perplexing and gave him the opportunity to make his case as the team’s future quarterback.
Long story short, Hill barely played in college, and even then, was never very productive as a quarterback. Due to him fulfilling a two-year Mormon mission, he was 26-years-old when he entered the NFL draft, and after suffering several injuries, went undrafted due to him being a complete unknown.
The Saints later signed him after the Packers let him go, and he made an impact in special teams, as well as a gadget option for them.
In Hill’s four starts, New Orleans has won three of them. However, that would be very misleading. We’ve gone over how Hill benefitted from a lot of “fluky” success in unstable metrics in his first start, and in the next two, he averaged just 4.88 and 6.27 yards/pass attempt, respectively.
Against the Eagles, the team’s first loss since September, he did throw for 291 yards, but a majority of that came went they were losing in the second half.
Something that immediately stands out with Hill is the 13 sacks he has taken. Simply put, his pocket presence is a major concern. Payton’s offenses rely a lot on the ability to limit negative plays and consistently moving the chains, making such substantial losses a big detriment to the offense’s overall production.
Furthermore, Hill has thrown two interceptions and has fumbled SIX times since taking over, which is a major no-no from a ball security standpoint. If he can’t take care of the football, what does he have over Winston?
Sure, Hill has made an impact as a rushing threat. However, in 2020, you need to be able to pass the ball to win games, and he so far has failed to prove to be capable of doing so.
In addition to his poor pocket presence, he has been far from accurate, and his 7.1 average depth of target means that he isn’t constantly taking shots down the field. If he isn’t efficient nor capable of producing big plays, there isn’t much reason for him to start at quarterback.
One way or another, the Saints are going to have Hill on the roster next season. For some inexplicable reason, they signed him to a two-year, $21 million contract that will pay him $16 million next season.
Thus, I believe there is a great likelihood that he will be the team’s starting quarterback next season. With how talented of a roster New Orleans should still have next season, that would be a major lost opportunity, but as far as predicting what they WILL do, it’s often wise to follow the money.