Agent’s Take: Saints hoping Taysom Hill can be long-term replacement for Drew Brees after latest extension

Taysom Hill couldn’t win a preseason competition with Jameis Winston to be the Saints starting quarterback. After Winston beat Hill out, he resumed the jack-of-all-trades role he has played for most of his career, where he lines up at running back, wide receiver and tight end as well as taking snaps under center in wildcat formations. Additionally, Hill has been a special teams standout.

Hill is still a winner, though. He is winning financially.

The Saints surprised the NFL world last week by signing Hill to a four-year, $40 million contract extension with $21.5 million in guarantees. The deal is worth as much as $94 million through base salary escalators and incentives contingent on Hill being a highly productive starting quarterback. The $54 million of new performance bonuses consist of $18 million in incentives and $36 million in salary escalators.

Unlike most contract extensions, Hill’s doesn’t include any new money this year. Hill is still making $12.159 million in 2021, but his $10.1 million in 2022 was fully guaranteed at signing. His $9.9 million 2023 base salary, which is guaranteed for injury, becomes completely secure next March 18 on the third day of the 2022 league year. $1.5 million of Hill’s $10 million 2024 base salary is also guaranteed for injury. It will be fully guaranteed on the third of the 2024 league year. His $10 million 2025 base salary is unsecured.

Hill’s new contract extension isn’t the first time the Saints have a made a curious financial decision with him. As a restricted free agent in 2020, the undrafted Hill was given a first-round tender for $4.641 million when a second-round tender at $3.259 million probably would have been sufficient to prevent any other team from signing him to an offer sheet. Hill was the only 2020 RFA to receive a first-round tender despite only attempting 13 passes in his three NFL seasons.

A second-round RFA tender effectively…


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