Trevor Siemian report card for Week 10 loss to Titans
Report cards in the real world are meant to measure progress. In terms of progress as an NFL quarterback, while there is no report card per se, it’s still a fun exercise to “grade” Trevor Siemian after his performance in the New Orleans Saints loss to the Tennessee Titans in Week 10.
Trevor Siemian is, by any measure, in a tough spot. The 29-year-old journeyman quarterback was asked to lead a Saint team in the middle of a playoff race.
Starter Jameis Winston suffered a season-ending knee injury against the Tampa Bay Bucs, and Siemian was thrust into the unenviable position of facing the Tampa defense. However, the Saints pulled the upset and while Siemian wasn’t great, he did what was necessary to secure the victory. Isn’t that what a backup quarterback is for?
Fast forward two weeks and the Saints are now mired in a two-game skid that has many questioning the possibility of an NFC playoff bid. Can this be laid at Siemian’s feet, or are there other factors at play?
Let’s look at the facts.
Under Siemian the Saints have averaged more pass attempts, and more points than under Winston. More points is a good thing, right? Well, not so fast. The stingy Saint defense has suffered some injuries of late and the last two weeks they have put the offense in holes that required a faster pace of play and more passing.
Compounding the problem, New Orleans has had their pass-catching corp come up small in the two weeks under Siemian. It’s not as if he doesn’t throw a nice, catchable ball, so what’s the issue?
Seven drops against Atlanta seem to indicate the receivers either lack the connection with Siemian, or the general skills to be NFL-level receivers. My guess is the latter. Unfortunately, there is no help waiting in the wings so the team is going to have to figure it out on the fly.
The important thing about a “report card” is to show progress. Siemian is definitely making progress in spite of the less than desirable results.
On the season he has thrown for 706 yards, five touchdowns, and no interceptions. His QB rating has gone up weekly as well, resulting in a season-high 104.8 against the Titans. The important stat to note is no interceptions. Siemian has yet to HURT the team.
It’s clear at this point in his career that he isn’t going to win games by himself, but with a decent defensive effort and a semblance of a run game, he should be more than serviceable, especially considering the Saints CLEARLY don’t consider Taysom Hill a viable alternative.
Trevor Siemian is not a great quarterback. He doesn’t need to be great to lead this team to wins. The current two-game skid does not fall on him.
Undoubtedly Siemian needs to improve his accuracy and work to increase his completion percentage, but he isn’t giving the ball away, which is huge. The Saints should be winning these games with the effort Siemian is giving, and I expect a victory over the Eagles to right the ship.
Based on what I have seen, and using the report card as a measure of PROGRESS, I give Trevor Siemian a B for his first two starts. If he can stay steady, keep the mistakes to a minimum and get some help from the defense, this could well be a solid “A” grade after the Eagle game.
If not, we could be getting our first look at Notre Dame rookie Ian Book sooner rather than later.