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Taysom Hill Views Himself As ‘Franchise Quarterback’ Heading Into Free Agency

Taysom Hill #7 of the New Orleans Saints throws a pass during the first half against the Minnesota Vikings in the NFC Wild Card Playoff game at Mercedes Benz Superdome on January 05, 2020 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana – New Orleans Saints quarterback and former BYU star Taysom Hill is going to be one of the more discussed players when free agency opens next month.

Everyone around the NFL and football fans everywhere has an opinion on Hill. Is he a starting quarterback in the league? Should he just remain as the “Swiss Army Knife” for the Saints? One person that believes Hill will be a starter at quarterback in the NFL is Taysom himself.

“Look, I definitely view myself as a franchise quarterback,” Hill told Rob Maaddi of the Associated Press. “I think, as you look at the other questions and is it New Orleans, is it somewhere else — as you go into free agency, this is the time that you start to find out how people view you and we haven’t gotten into free agency long enough to know how these guys view me and we’ll just handle it as it comes.”

Despite only having 13 career regular-season passing attempts, there is a lot of buzz surrounding Hill’s restricted free agency. Rumors are circulating that the Saints could be offering Taysom the first-round tender when free agency begins. That tender would give the former BYU star a pay increase of up to $4.407 million next season.

But Saints head coach Sean Payton is also expecting other teams to be in the mix for Taysom as well.

“Yeah, I think someone is going to make him an offer,” Payton said on The Peter King Podcast. “But the first thing the fan has to understand is … if we tender Taysom as a one, the team that makes the offer on him and signs him to an offer understands they’re going to give up a first-round pick if we don’t match. That’s easier to do if you are pick 22, 23, 24, 25. We might very well see it if it’s a team in the second half of the first round.”

Will Taysom Hill leave the Saints?

In three years with the Saints organization, Hill has thrown for 119 yards and he’s played in 701 total snaps ranging from offense to special teams. He’s one of the best all-around athletes the BYU football program has ever produced and he’s taking the NFL by storm with the variety of ways he can impact the game. But will he actually leave New Orleans?

“I think, as you get to free agency, there’s no denying that I love my time in New Orleans,” Hill said to the AP. “I love coach [Sean] Payton. I love Pete Carmichael and Joe [Lombardi], the offensive coordinator and quarterback coach that I’ve worked with. Special teams — it has been an incredible experience for me. The fan base — I have loved every second of my time there.

“So do I want to leave? The fact of the matter is no, I don’t. But as you look at free agency, you have to find the right opportunity for you. You have to find this situation to take care of your family. I want to play quarterback in this league and if New Orleans doesn’t view me that way, then I have to leave. And so, that’s really where we’re at.”

Deadline for Saints to submit an offer to Taysom

The Saints have until March 18th, 2020 at 4 p.m. (EST)/2 p.m. (MST) to submit a qualifying offer to Taysom Hill and all other restricted free agents.

Mitch Harper is a BYU Insider for and host of the Cougar Tracks Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and Cougar Sports Saturday (Saturday from 12-3 pm) on KSL Newsradio. Follow him on Twitter: @Mitch_Harper.

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