Sean Payton’s decision to start Taysom Hill at quarterback Sunday afternoon apparently is not a universally popular one in New Orleans.
Many figured Payton would roll with Jameis Winston, the No. 1 overall pick in 2015, over Hill, a gadget player with 18 career pass attempts, for the Saints’ game against the Atlanta Falcons. But Payton surprised many when he tabbed Hill as Drew Brees’ replacement moving forward.
However, some within the Saints organization feel Payton should’ve gone the other way, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
Check out this note from his column published Sunday morning:
New Orleans coach Sean Payton struggled with choosing the Saints’ starting quarterback for Sunday’s game before ultimately deciding to go with Taysom Hill, but multiple players and people within the organization thought Jameis Winston should have been the starter against the Atlanta Falcons, sources told ESPN.
Payton knew that whichever quarterback he decided on — Hill or Winston — would lead to a specific and different type of game plan. The longtime coach went with the quarterback whom the Saints assured last spring — as he was signing his two-year extension — that he would get a chance to start if Drew Brees ever got hurt.
The Saints view this as a chance to get an evaluation of Hill at quarterback now and for the future, with Brees still likely to retire after this season, according to sources.
Obviously, that Hill will start hardly precludes Payton from switching to Winston at any given point. Nevertheless, it will be fascinating to see how Hill handles starting quarterback duties.
The Saints and visiting Falcons are scheduled to kick off at 1 p.m. ET.