Just moments after legendary quarterback Drew Brees officially announced his retirement in an Instagram post, the New Orleans Saints disclosed that they have reached a contract extension with versatile offensive weapon Taysom Hill.
According to Adam Schefter of ESPN, Hill's new deal is for 4 years and $140 million dollars. Schefter reports that the contract includes a $9.7 million signing bonus, a $1.44 million guaranteed roster bonus, and a $1.034 million base salary plus incentives.
This move actually saves the Saints over $7.4 million of salary-cap space in 2021. Taysom Hill was previously going to count $16 million against the cap as he moved into the last year of his deal. This contract actually has three voidable years built into it, designed specifically to create salary-cap room for the team before the March 17 start of free agency. Hill will now count for $8.4 million against the team's cap for this coming season.
Hill, who will turn 31 just before the start of the regular season, has been a versatile and valuable offensive tool since joining the Saints in 2017. He has 809 yards rushing and 11 touchdowns over the last three seasons and 30 receptions for 336 yards and 7 scores over that same period.
Taysom Hill finally got the chance to showcase his potential as a quarterback when he started four games in place of an injured Brees last season. He won three of those four starts, completing 70% of his throws for 834 yards with 4 touchdowns and 2 interceptions.
Despite the length of Hill's contract extension, this does not mean that he will be the successor to the iconic Brees in 2021. Again, this deal has voidable years attached and was done specifically to create salary-cap room. Hill could be in competition for the starting job, but there are multiple reports that the Saints are attempting to re-sign QB Jameis Winston before Wednesday's start of free agency.
The contract also could indeed open the door for Hill to be the starter in 2021 with little financial risk to the team. If he plays well, the Saints have him under contract already. If he plays poorly, New Orleans could move on to another option at the position, perhaps a draft pick this season, and void the remaining years of Hill's deal.
Still, Taysom Hill's greatest value to the offense is his running ability and versatility, best used at multiple positions rather than as a starting quarterback.
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