Both guys are no stranger to the Saints, as Hill is entering year five with the organization and Winston is heading into his sophomore season in the Big Easy. Hill was the one who was handed the reigns to the offense when Brees went down with an injury last year but Winston has, in most cases, been the favorite to win the job for the 2021 season.
Brad Gagnon of Bleacher Report was the latest to make that ruling. Gagnon went through every quarterback battle in his latest writeup and had Winston winning it in New Orleans.
"On the surface, you’d think the 2015 No. 1 overall pick and 2019 league passing yardage leader would have the advantage over a gadget player with extremely limited passing experience like Hill in this spot, but Sean Payton has shown us time and again that he loves Hill.Hill also put up solid numbers in a short run as a starter in place of an injured Drew Brees in 2020, but the reality is Winston’s ceiling is way higher, and he’s actually three-and-a-half years younger than Hill.~~~Barring a disastrous August, Winston should get the nod Week 1 against the Green Bay Packers. That said, I’d expect to see plenty of both players throughout the season."
Jameis Winston is the favorite to win the Saints QB battle.
No one would be shocked to see Winston emerge as the starting quarterback when it’s all said and done. He’s a former No. 1 overall pick who started for half a decade in Tampa Bay while throwing for over 5,100 yards and 33 touchdowns in 2019 (his last year as a starter).
Winston isn’t in Tampa anymore for a reason though and that, among Hill’s own accomplishments in New Orleans, is why the door is still left open for Hill to come in and claim the job. He did well when asked to step in and start four games last season, going 3-1 and keeping the Saints ahead of the division.
Sean Payton loves Hill and is going to give him every chance to compete but Winston should be the one chosen to lead the Saints throughout the regular season. As Gagnon said, however, if Winston has a terrible August while Hill shines, then things could go in a different direction.
Saints fans are used to seeing Winston as the leader in this category but until he’s actually named the starter (something that needs to happen sooner rather than later), this will be something we have to get used to hearing about, and for good reason.
Quarterback is the most important position and the Saints offense will have a totally different look depending on who their signal-caller is, so this is a huge decision that fans are waiting on.