The relationship between Sean Payton and the media has always been contentious. Payton tends to talk cryptically and does not like to explain why he does certain things. That is very apparent lately with the New Orleans Saints quarterback situation. After Jameis Winston was injured for the rest of the season, the Saints season took a dive. The Saints have lost four straight games with Trevor Siemian at quarterback. With the NFC wild-card still in play though, it is time for the Saints to make a change at quarterback.
New Orleans Saints Quarterback Needs a Change for Playoff Run
Trevor Siemian has not been a complete disaster for the Saints. Even though the Saints went 0-4 under Siemian, the Saints offense has been battling through many injuries. The Saints might have one of the worst receiver units in the NFL as well. Even still, Siemian has not shown himself worthy of any more starts. Siemian has a career completion percentage under 60% and that held true this year as well. His interception rate improved with Sean Payton but that was not enough to get for some wins for the team. Siemian also does not bring any kind of rushing or scrambling to the game plan either. With a team lacking weapons, having a quarterback who can move would be a bonus. Siemian brought none of that to the table and it showed in the Saints offensive output over the last four games.
The Saints entered the fourth quarter of every game in the Siemian era with 12 or fewer points. If not for some late-game scores, Siemian’s statistics would be even worse. It is curious that the Saints did not see what rookie Ian Book could do during these last few games. Book could have gotten some experience and the Saints could have assessed what the rookie could do on the field. Going 0-4 in the last four weeks with a journeyman-backup without learning anything seems like a waste of time. At least if Book had been on the field, some knowledge could have come from his playing time.
Past Due for Taysom Time
Taysom Hill looks to be finally taking over the quarterback job for the Saints this season, as reported by Ian Rapoport on Twitter. After Jameis Winston’s injury, many thought Hill would be the first choice for the job. Hill has been injured lately so it could just be the circumstance that he has not started a game this season. This will not be Hill’s first opportunity to lead the Saints though. Last season, Hill led the Saints to a 3-1 record in the four games he started. Over these games, Hill completed over 70% of his passes while rushing for 52 yards per game. The Saints defense is too good to keep playing Siemian at quarterback. Hill’s style can shorten games and let the defense rest some during games, allowing a fresh defense every possession. Hill has started very few games at quarterback, so it would stand to reason that he can improve even more as he starts more games as well.
Trevor Siemian never was in the running to be the Saints starting quarterback this off-season. Sean Payton will likely never reveal the true reason that Siemian started the last four games, though. As was reported this week, it does appear as if Taysom Hill will start at quarterback for the Saints in this week’s Thursday night national game. The Saints change at quarterback could not come at a better time. If Hill can come in and spark the offense, then the Saints can compete for a wild card playoff birth in the last half of the NFL regular season.
Wild Card Birth in the Balance
The Saints upcoming schedule does shape up well. After this week’s nationally televised game against the Dallas Cowboys, the Saints have four teams on the schedule that currently do not have a winning record. The New York Jets, Miami Dolphins, Atlanta Falcons, and Carolina Panthers are all upcoming. With how the NFC is shaping up, getting to nine wins could very well become a playoff birth. Taysom Hill’s presence at quarterback could be the catalyst the Saints need to make this push.
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