No one could have predicted the injuries and trials the Saints have had just trying to keep a quarterback healthy enough to compete each week.
Jameis Winston played very well through the first seven games of 2021 and was 5-2 when he suffered a season-ending injury.
Trevor Siemian stepped in for the next four games and was 0-4.
Week 13 was Taysom Hill‘s turn against the Dallas Cowboys.
Hill had a foot injury that he was working through, but that was par for the course because the Saints are very banged up.
He took the reins of an offense that is ranked 19th in rushing, 27th in passing, and 27th overall.
The Saints lost to the Cowboys by the score of 27-17.
How did he do?
His grade is a C, and here is why.
3. He Threw Two Touchdown Passes
Here’s a look at that Taysom Hill to Lil’Jordan Humphrey touchdown: pic.twitter.com/FlOrErxecK
— Amie Just (@Amie_Just) December 3, 2021
Particularly in the first half, this was a hard fought and tight game.
Hill’s arm was the source of the two touchdowns scored.
He showed a capability to put the ball where it needed to be for the receivers to catch it.
2. He Rushed For Over 100 Yards
TAYSOM HILL 😱
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) December 3, 2021
Hill is comfortable calling his own number.
On 11 running plays, he gained 101 yards.
His longest running play was 24 yards.
1. He Threw Four Interceptions
Not a good pass from Taysom Hill, for his third interception thrown in the game. He has a 36.9 passer rating in this game.
And it's the ninth interception on the season for Trevon Diggs! pic.twitter.com/8HAChQkq1D
— The Comeback (@thecomeback) December 3, 2021
The kiss of death for Hill was the four interceptions he threw.
Only the Ravens Lamar Jackson gets away with this miserable stat and still leads his team to a win.
These interceptions were the difference in the game.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) December 3, 2021
In addition to his foot injury which is a partially torn plantar fascia, he suffered a finger injury in the early part of the game.
The finger on his throwing hand collided with a defender’s arm.
He briefly went into the tent, got a splint, and continued to play.
After the fact, we learn that he may have the same condition Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson suffered earlier this season.
It is called mallet finger, and it requires surgery at some point.
Mallet finger is a torn tendon in the middle finger.
For the injury reasons outlined above, it may not be fair to evaluate him at all.
Some analysts are blaming Saints coach Sean Payton for using Hill as a starting quarterback.
In the Brees era, he was a trick or gadget play guy who had a lot of success.
Those analysts believe that the starting quarterback role is not where Hill’s talents lie.
"I'm not giving Taysom Hill a grade bc if you accidentally stumble into the wrong classroom they don't grade you on those tests. They say, 'You're in the QB room, buddy. Go to the room you're supposed to be in.' It's not his fault. This is all on Sean Payton." — @getnickwright pic.twitter.com/wp48s1xzdJ
— First Things First (@FTFonFS1) December 3, 2021
The problem is that the Saints pay him a lot of money and have limited quarterback options at the moment.
This means the Saints have more problems.
Hill is now more injured than before last night’s game, and Siemian was ineffective.
It is unclear who the team will play in the Week 14 game against the New York Jets.
The decision may not matter now that the Saints are 5-7 and tied for third place in the NFC South with Carolina and behind Tampa Bay and Atlanta.