Many critics claimed that Sean Payton’s New Orleans Saints are done for the season after franchise quarterback Drew Brees suffered long-term injuries in Week 10. They backed Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to win the NFC South Division title this season. But, we assume that all that has changed after the emergence of Taysom Hill last weekend.
Hill went 18 of 23, throwing for 233 yards in 24-9 win over the Atlanta Falcons. However, he did rush for 51 yards and scored two rushing TDs. That took his 2020 rushing touchdowns tally to six. Is Taysom Hill the man to lead the Saints to the Super Bowl?
New Orleans Saints‘ head coach Sean Payton made an appearance on the hugely popular Rich Eisen Show earlier this week. Rich asked his esteemed guest to talk about his enigmatic quarterback, Taysom Hill, and how he arrived in New Orleans.
Here’s what coach Payton revealed.
“The final cut down every year comes right before the first weekend of the regular season. So the weekend prior, every team cuts down to their other final 53 at that time. And so there’s a lot of tape everyone’s watching for roster cuts. And they asked me to look at a practice squad candidate at receiver….they all happen to be with this quarterback number seven Taysom Hill. And so as I’m watching the cut up, I couldn’t help but notice the quarterback as well.”
“He made a few big plays, he scrambled gained eight, nine yards, there’s a play where he steps up in the pocket, and he ran for 33 yards and a touchdown. And the other thing that was noticeable was when he scored on that play, all 10 other players were in the end zone, you know, celebrating with them. And so you could tell on film. This was a young player in his rookie year at BYU that, that his teammates, certainly were playing for in. I called Ireland in and I said, Hey, I mean, I’m comfortable. We were looking at the decision,” Payton told Eisen on the show.
Despite all these claims, Saints coach Sean Payton said it was all down to fate when they made their interest in Hill apparent. The claiming order process is similar to that of the NFL draft, which made Hill’s acquisition all the more difficult.
Payton explained, “When the cuts are made at training camp, there’s a claiming order and it’s the draft order that year. And so the team that picked first in the draft would have the first claim. And so when all these cuts are made, you’ll see claims put in and if three or four teams claim an individual player, it’s awarded to the highest CD claim the first the second all the way back to the Super Bowl winner.”
“I think we were claiming 11 that year. And I was just worried that maybe someone ahead of us claims that the player but fortunately with that claim we were we were awarded the player so we really got them at the week before the start of the regular season. We were fortunate You know, I’m sure glad we did,” Payton further added.
Without a doubt, Hill certainly silenced his doubters with his display against the Falcons last weekend. With Drew’s absence and Jameis Winston lurking in the shadows, Hill needs to be at the top of his game on a consistent basis. Will he be the successor to Drew Brees’ throne in New Orleans? Time will tell.