Who is the Saints starting quarterback?
Jameis Winston has shown this preseason that he should be the starting quarterback for the New Orleans Saints. On Friday, it was reported that the former No. 1 overall pick was awarded the job. Saints head coach Sean Payton named Winston the team's starting quarterback over Taysom Hill, per ESPN's Adam Schefter. CBSSports.comJameis Winston named Saints starting quarterback, beating out Taysom Hill, per report
Square spent the previous six seasons with the San Diego/Los Angeles Chargers. He signed as a free agent with Cleveland on May 4, but the Browns released him on Aug. 19.
Square was among five players who worked out for New Orleans on Thursday.
The defensive lineman joins the Saints after they placed reserve defensive tackle Jalen Dalton on injured reserve with a season-ending injury.
New Orleans also will be without starting defensive tackle David Onyemata for the first six games of the regular season while he serves a suspension for violating the league’s Policy on Performance-Enhancing Drugs.
With Onyemata and Dalton missing, New Orleans’ top candidates to start the season-opener against the Green Bay Packers on Sept. 12 were Albert Huggins, Malcolm Roach, Christian Ringo and Shy Tuttle.
Huggins has played in five games over the past two seasons, Roach played in nine games as a reserve for the Saints as an undrafted rookie in 2020, Ringo hasn’t played in an NFL game since 2018 and Tuttle started three games for New Orleans last season.
Square has played in 75 consecutive NFL games, with 23 starts in that span.
Scheduled for Saturday against the Arizona Cardinals, the Saints’ final preseason game was canceled because of Hurricane Ida. New Orleans must reduce its 80-player preseason roster to the regular-season active-roster limit of 53 by 3 p.m. CDT Tuesday.
A member of three BCS national-championship teams at Alabama, Square entered the NFL by making the Philadelphia Eagles’ roster as an undrafted rookie in 2013.
After Square played in 10 games in 2013, the Eagles released him at the end of training camp in 2014. The Kansas City Chiefs picked up the defensive lineman, but Square never got in a game with Kansas City before being released on Oct. 31, 2014. The Chargers picked him up on Nov. 3, 2014, but he finished that season without appearing in a game.
Square went from Dec. 29, 2013, when he played the last of his 147 defensive snaps for the Eagles, until Nov. 9, 2015, without appearing in an NFL regular-season game.
After playing in San Diego’s final five games of 2015, Square played 362 defensive snaps in 11 games for the Chargers in 2016. That led to a two-year contract with the Chargers, followed by two one-year deals with Los Angeles.
In 2020, Square played in every game for the fourth consecutive season. He made one start and recorded 20 tackles, including a sack, while playing 252 defensive snaps, his fewest since 2015.
Mark Inabinett is a sports reporter for Alabama Media Group. Follow him on Twitter at @AMarkG1.
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28 August, 2021 - 10:11pm
28 August, 2021 - 12:15pm
The Cardinals have clearly seen enough from Murray this preseason as head coach Kliff Kingsbury announced that Murray would not take the field this week. That is hardly a surprise, given that Murray has been with the team for two years already. It is not as if he needs the third week of the preseason to get acquainted with the offense.
Murray does not look like an injury-risk type of player, as he has played 16 games in both of his first two seasons. He played 96% of the team’s offensive snaps in 2019, rising to 97% in 2020. Still, when you watch Murray, you can see there is a risk to his game. He’s not the biggest player, and he plays a cavalier style of offense.
Last season, Murray hurt his shoulder in Week 11 against the Seahawks. There was a difference to his game after that. It was clear to anyone watching, and it was reflected in the statistics as well.
The difference is stark when using fantasy points as the element to give you an overview of Murray’s game. He went from averaging 32.2 fantasy points per game to 20.2. That is a drop-off in production of 37.3%. Regardless, his performance in the first half of the season has people excited over Murray’s fantasy outlook for 2021.
There has been a lot to be impressed about by Murray in his career. Through two seasons, he has completed 65.8% of his passes, 7,693 passing yards, 46 touchdowns, and 24 interceptions. His 4.2% touchdown rate and 7.0 yards per attempt are solid numbers. His 2.2% interception rate is somewhat of a concern, however.
Murray has also contributed as a runner since being drafted. Across those two years, he has carried the ball 226 times for 1,363 yards (6 yards per attempt) and 15 touchdowns.
28 August, 2021 - 06:20am
The Arizona Cardinals and New Orleans Saints are facing off for Week 3 of the 2021 NFL preseason, airing on local television. We break down how to watch the matchup, particularly if you’re outside the broadcast region.
The game will air on KPNX 12 (NBC) in the Cardinals market, while full broadcast info for the Saints is available here. Given that this is the preseason, we’ll see plenty of unknown and lesser known faces on the rosters. To keep track of who you’re watching checking out the Cardinals roster and the Saints roster.
The Cardinals lost 17-14 to the Kansas City Chiefs last week, but it was the first preseason action for QB Kyler Murray and the first-team offense. Murray and Co. did not look good in the first quarter against the Chiefs. Murray was 1-of-4 for 2 yards and was sacked twice. The Cardinals have not announced who will play in the preseason finale, but did activate James Conner and Andy Isabella off the reserve/COVID-19 list off the last week. The New Orleans Saints defeated the Jacksonville Jaguars 23-21 Monday night, thanks to a good performance from QB Jameis Winston. Winston established himself as the team’s starter, completing 9-of-10 passes for 123 yards and 2 TDs. Both of Winston’s touchdown passes went to wide receiver Marquez Callaway, who had 5 receptions for 104 yards.
If you aren’t around a TV to check out this preseason contest, you’ll need to dig a little deeper for streaming options. While regular season games are usually available outside the two local markets, preseason games are much more limited. To view this game via live online stream, you’ll need to use NFL Game Pass. If you are not planning on watching every week of the preseason, the service offers a free seven-day trial.
The Saints are a 3.5-point favorite at DraftKings Sportsbook and -195 on the moneyline. The Cardinals are a +165 moneyline underdog. The point total is installed at 34.
28 August, 2021 - 03:00am
New Orleans Saints linebacker Kaden Elliss (55) celebrates with linebacker Chase Hansen (42) - Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
The New Orleans Saints were supposed to face the Arizona Cardinals in both teams’ preseason finale on Saturday afternoon but the game was canceled due to Hurricane Ida. This was absolutely the right decision for the safety of everyone involved with both teams but it’s hard not to feel bad for the fringe-roster guys who needed this game to try and keep their jobs.
One position hit incredibly hard by this canceled game was at linebacker, where the competition to make the final 53-man roster was stiff.
John Sigler of Saints Wire did a final roster projection and it was obvious that he had a hard time cutting any of the linebackers on the team. He ended up parting ways with Andrew Dowell, Wynton McManis, and Shaq Smith, with the latter being the “easiest” option to cut.
The other two names, however, have really impressed for the Saints this offseason and it’s crushing to see them potentially as options to cut but that’s how stacked this group is. Kaden Elliss and Chase Hansen have also played well and would definitely deserve to make the team if that’s how things really played out.
The preseason finale was supposed to serve as the final opportunity for these guys to make a strong statement as to what they could do for this team. We saw McManis flash tremendous potential against Jacksonville and fans started to imagine what kind of impact he could have for this defense.
Now, however, that opportunity isn’t there for McManis, Dowell, Smith, or any of the other fringe-roster guys. The Saints went from having a questionable linebacker group to now having an incredibly difficult situation ahead of them as far as who to cut.
No matter who the Saints opt to keep and cut, there are always going to be people wondering if things would have been different if the preseason finale had taken place.
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27 August, 2021 - 09:04pm
The New Orleans Saints’ preseason preparations have been significantly impacted by the threat of Hurricane Ida.
The Saints were slated to face the Arizona Cardinals in a preseason game at the Superdome on Saturday, but that has been canceled due to Ida’s approach. The storm is forecast to become a Category Four hurricane and approach southern Louisiana on Sunday.
That also means the Saints have elected to evacuate New Orleans. The team will practice at AT&T Stadium in Dallas for at least the first part of the week.
The Saints are flying to Dallas tomorrow to evacuate before Hurricane Ida makes landfall and will stay there through Wednesday with practices at AT&T stadium.
— Katherine Terrell (@Kat_Terrell) August 27, 2021
It’s not ideal for the Saints’ preseason preparations. They will not play again in preseason, and are slated to open the regular season at home against the Green Bay Packers on Sept. 12.
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27 August, 2021 - 05:02pm
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The Saints initially moved up the start time from 7 p.m. to noon CT, but the team decided to cancel the game late Friday afternoon as weather forecasts became more daunting. Ida is on track to make landfall in southern Louisiana on Sunday night, with the possibility that it could strengthen into a Category 4 hurricane with top winds of 140 mph by then.
"Due to the intensification of the hurricane throughout the day and after the most recent tropical update, the team's leadership has made the decision in the best interests of all personnel that may have been directly and indirectly affected by the storm," the Saints said in a statement. "This announcement comes after constant communications with City of New Orleans officials, the National Weather Service, Homeland Security, Governor [John Bel] Edwards and leading state officials and the National Football League. The team encourages all residents of the region to take precautionary measures to remain safe throughout the impending hurricane.
"The Saints will be in communication with season ticket account holders regarding applicable refunds and/or credits to their season ticket accounts."
The Saints have made contingency plans to evacuate to Dallas on Saturday afternoon to ride out the storm, sources confirmed. If necessary, they will hold practice in the Dallas Cowboys' AT&T Stadium, as first reported by NOLA.com.
For their part, the Cardinals, who left for New Orleans just around 1:15 p.m. PT on Friday for the game, released a statement after the game was officially canceled that read: "Our team plane is being diverted back to Phoenix."
These sorts of adjustments are unfortunately nothing new for the Saints, who had to evacuate New Orleans for an entire season after Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and have moved practices out of town multiple times over the years.
Last year, the Saints stayed home when Hurricane Zeta hit New Orleans in late October, with coaches and other team officials riding out the storm under generator power at the team facility.