Pro Football Focus came out with their top 150 NFL free agents, and it’s to no one’s surprise that Saints’ quarterback Jameis Winston made the cut.
The New Orleans Saints have a big offseason ahead of them with several star players hitting the open market. There may be none more important to the future of the team than former No. 1 overall pick Jameis Winston.
However, unless Winston takes another pay cut, giving him the starting role may not matter as he’d likely head elsewhere. The Saints rank in the bottom five in cap space while teams like Indianapolis rank in the top five and could give Winston a massive contract.
Pro Football Focus, in a piece that both ranked and predicted the contract and landing spot of the top 150 free agents, had Winston heading to the Colts, a team that won’t have Phillip Rivers returning in 2021.
The Colts have the cap space to make Winston an offer that’s almost undeniable. And, what’s even more alluring is that Indianapolis will have almost a better chance to take Winston deep into the postseason.
Now, if Winston stays or goes may already be set in his mind as this past season and the conversations that he’s had with Sean Payton regarding his future may have solidified his decision, but to the outsider, other destinations make more sense for him this offseason.
That said, when Drew Brees missed four games this season, it was Taysom Hill who drew the start, going 3-1 as a starter. While it feels like Winston is the preferred option, one has to wonder if that sits in the back of his mind.
He did get to give the team life in their Divisional Round matchup with a 56-yard bomb to Tre’Quan Smith. Payton did opt to use him some towards the end of the season, so that could be at least one saving grace for the organization that clearly wants him back.
Winston signed for under $2 million last offseason after throwing for the most yards in the NFL in 2019. He also had a league-high 30 interceptions, so there is some risk involved with adding Winston if you don’t fully know if his turnover-prone nature has been resolved.
That said, the Saints want to, so Winston must have done something right. For now, we’ll just have to sit back and see if they can make that a reality.