For the first time since 2005, the New Orleans Saints will begin an NFL season without Drew Brees on their roster.
In Brees' last season, the Saints made it to the NFC Divisional Round. Now, the Saints begin the era without their star quarterback. They've already started shaping how that'll look during this offseason, but only time will tell if it works out.
Here are the three best moves that the Saints have made so far this offseason.
3. Signing Nick Vannett
The Saints lost Josh Hill and Jared Cook over the offseason, meaning they needed to bring in a new tight end. Enter Nick Vannett. While he's primarily been a blocking tight end for most of his career, Vannett can also contribute offensively. He's caught 75/105 targets since 2016, recording 686 yards and 5 touchdowns. If Vannett can play like that over the course of a season, the Saints might have a steal on their hands.
2. Franchise Tagging Marcus Williams
While a lot of people have different opinions on the franchise tag, it was a good idea for the Saints to use it on Marcus Williams. With the team's unfortunate cap situation, it was a good thing that Williams didn't end up elsewhere. The 24-year-old has 20 pass deflections, 7 interceptions and a touchdown in his last two seasons. It's safe to say that the Saints would like to keep him as a cornerstone of their defense for years to come.
1. Re-Signing Jameis Winston
With Drew Brees retiring, Jameis Winston is going to get a crack at the Saints starting quarterback job. The team brought him back on a one-year deal after it was clear that there weren't better options in free agency. Head coach Sean Payton already said that he wants to see Winston compete for the job back in March. Winston threw for 5,109 yards and 33 touchdowns in 2019, so the talent is there, but he also had 30 interceptions that season. Yes, the Saints still have Taysom Hill, but if Payton can help get Winston to reach his full potential, the transition from the Brees era to the next in New Orleans could be that much less painful.
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