The New Orleans Saints are going into an offseason that could be among the most transforming in team history, and Jameis Winston could be a crucial factor in whether it is a success or failure.
With the pending retirement of Drew Brees, the New Orleans Saints need to prepare for what’s next. While Brees hasn’t officially said that he’s calling it a career, after the three-interception game to end the team’s season, it feels almost like a given.
Add in the fact that he has an NBC broadcasting gig waiting for him, and it almost makes it too good of a setup for Brees to actually return for another season. After all, he also has missed extensive stretches of the last two regular seasons.
On a 42-year-old, those hits build up rather quickly. Willing to restructure his contract, Brees send a little hint that he may hang up the cleats when he allowed the team to free up $24 million in cap space.
Assuming he retires, the biggest question mark immediately is who starts at quarterback for the Saints in 2021.
Jameis Winston is the player that’s expected to take over, and according to Bleacher Report’s Maurice Moton, he’s their biggest offseason need. It makes sense as New Orleans is going to need a playmaker. Winston has shown that he can be that guy.
With over 5,000 yards in 2019, the question will be whether or not he’s corrected the league-high 30 interceptions he threw. Assuming Sean Payton believes he has, the veteran coach will be doing whatever it takes to make sure he stays in the Big Easy.
That said, Taysom Hill played well, but it doesn’t feel like Payton is going to be going with him moving forward.
Hill could demand a trade given he’s noted his desire to be a full-time quarterback, but it’s unlikely the Saints could get anyone to pick up his contract even if he did want to switch franchises. As long as the cap is there, Winston will be back in the Big Easy.
But, it’s tough to tell what offers he’ll have on the table come March. For now, he’s 100 percent the team’s biggest need.