Who Else Could Be The Saints’ Future Quarterback?
We’ve looked at both the present and the past, so let us turn our attention to the future!
If the Saints go for someone other than Winston or Hill, it is unlikely to come via free agency. They simply do not have the finances to sign Dak Prescott or Phillip Rivers, and I’m not sure what Jacoby Brissett, Mitch Trubisky, or Tyrod Taylor would exactly be bringing to the table.
Could New Orleans trade for someone? Many will point to Sam Darnold, who will be coveted as the third overall pick in the 2018 draft, but given how poorly he has performed with the Jets, I don’t see the value in trading draft compensation for him. The same goes for Dwayne Haskins in Washington.
Obviously, they won’t also won’t be able to afford veteran quarterback Matthew Stafford in a trade, which leaves two options that are currently in the NFL.
The first one is Cam Newton. Saints fans are well aware of the former MVP from his time with the Panthers, and although his overall production hasn’t been great with the Patriots, a lot of that has been due to the team’s lack of receivers and overall style of play.
Given Payton’s ability to keep the offense afloat with Hill, Newton would be appealing.
His 7.2 yards/attempt is impressive given what he is working with, and he remains a threat on the ground. Plus, he should come cheap, especially since the chance to start for Payton in New Orleans will likely be appealing; he even would get to play the Panthers twice a year.
The other one is unlikely, but what about trading for Hurts? The Eagles are still paying Carson Wentz a lot of money for the next four years, so if they decide to stick with him, New Orleans could offer draft compensation for Hurts. Doing so would allow them to make up for the mistake of not drafting him, though I’m not sure if this is even an option.
That leaves the upcoming draft as the other place to find a future quarterback. Since the Saints have clinched a playoff berth, they won’t be picking high enough to land a premier quarterback.
However, this is a deep class, so maybe they can draft a second-tier quarterback like Trey Lance or Mac Jones? Lance, from North Dakota State, is the type of toolsy dual-threat quarterback that Payton may like, while Jones’ accuracy would allow them to run a similar offense to what they have now.
Newton, Hurts (is possible), or one of those two quarterbacks in the draft are far more appealing to me than going with the status quo at the quarterback position. The Saints may not be able to make a splash, but there are certainly enough options for them.