It’s our duty to keep you informed of the Jameis Winston-Taysom Hill battle, so we’ve compared the New Orleans Saints quarterbacks’ performances through two preseason games so far.
While Winston had the far better showing on Monday night, the two quarterbacks have recorded extremely similar numbers against the Ravens and Jaguars. Or, in the case of yardage, the exact same number:
We knew the battle would be close, but not that close.
Without making this article sound too much like a play-by-play, we briefly reviewed some of Hill’s and Winston’s key moments in the last two preseason games.
In the fumble-heavy preseason opener against Baltimore, Hill got the start with the first team and managed to sustain some early drives. He completed passes on multiple third downs and ultimately finished the game going 8-for-12 for 81 yards with one interception, earning a quarterback rating of 51.1.
Winston got in roughly a quarter of work after Hill and led two touchdown drives with the second team. He ended the game 7-of-12 for 96 yards with one interception too, earning a quarterback rating of 77.1.
In the second preseason game against Jacksonville, Winston got the start this time and threw two absolute beauties in the first quarter. His link with Marquez Callaway was the story of the night, but he was taken off after about 14 minutes of action. Winston finished 9-of-10 for 123 yards and two touchdowns (no interceptions!), and earned a nearly perfect rating of 157.5.
Hill was less impressive with the second team and played up until the end of the third quarter. He ended up going 11-for-20 on 138 yards and one touchdown (he found Lil’Jordan Humphrey on a 14 yard pass), earning a rating of 93.3.
New Orleans Saints: Analyzing the Winston-Hill battle by the numbers
If you’ve made it this far past all the dreary numbers, you can start to imagine who the better quarterback is. Yes, both Winston and Hill have nearly identical numbers through two games, but when Winston gets first team reps and when he’s allowed space and time, he can look far more dangerous than his rival.
Twitter mostly agrees. Here are a few comments from fans regarding the Saints QB battle:
“The competition ended on that Callaway TD tonight.”
“Smh stop the comparison nonsense. Jameis led two TD drives with the 2s and two TD drives with the 1s this week.”
And this pretty fair assessment:
While many see Winston as the clear-cut winner of the competition, Sean Payton has unsurprisingly remained tight-lipped about the situation.
We side with most of the Twitterverse in believing Winston is more “quarterback material” than Hill, but ESPN’s Mike Triplett puts it best: “If we were scoring this thing like a boxing fight, Winston would probably be ahead on most scorecards…But neither QB has delivered a knockout blow.”
Before any final conclusions are made, note the obvious: This is still just preseason, and games don’t matter*
*There is one final preseason game against the Arizona Cardinals where Winston could increase the gap or Hill could do something absolutely amazing and catch up to him.
The fate of the Saints’ quarterbacks lies in Payton’s hands, and our speculation remains just that. This is starting to look like a grueling battle that never ends, as neither Winston nor Hill may be capable of delivering “a knockout blow.”
For now, though, numbers are all we can rely on.