Oct 20, 2022; Glendale, Arizona, USA; New Orleans Saints quarterback Andy Dalton (14) against the Arizona Cardinals at State Farm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Saints tab Andy Dalton for start again in Week 8

Andy Dalton is drawing the start at quarterback again for the New Orleans Saints this week despite a healthy Jameis Winston, the ordained starter to open the season.

Saints coach Dennis Allen on Wednesday called it an “offensive decision,” noting that Winston is healthy.

“… We’re going to continue with Andy,” Allen told reporters. “… No need to upset the apple cart.”

The Saints, who have lost two straight, host the Las Vegas Raiders this Sunday.

Winston, 28, started the first three games before suffering back and ankle injuries. He went 1-2, completing 63.5 percent of his passes for 858 yards, with four touchdowns against five interceptions.

Dalton, who turns 35 on Saturday, has gone 1-3 as the starter, completing 63.4 percent of his passes for 946 yards, with seven TDs against four INTs.

–Field Level Media

Sep 25, 2022; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA;  New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston (2) throws the ball against the Carolina Panthers during the second half at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

Saints’ Jameis Winston back at practice; Michael Thomas sits

Quarterback Jameis Winston returned to practice for New Orleans on Wednesday but Michael Thomas was among a host of Saints — including all three starting wideouts — sidelined in the first practice of the week.

Both Winston (back, ankle) and Thomas (foot) missed the Saints’ past two games with their respective injuries. Winston was reportedly playing through four fractured vertebrae before being sidelined.

Andy Dalton has gone 1-1 as the starter in place of Winston.

While Winston was listed as limited in practice, six other players joined Thomas on the did-not-participate list: WRs Deonte Harty (foot), Jarvis Landry (ankle) and rookie Chris Olave (concussion), cornerback Marshon Lattimore (abdomen), defensive end Payton Turner (chest) and tackle Calvin Throckmorton (hip).

Thomas, Olave and Landry all start for the Saints. Tre’Quan Smith and Marquez Callaway were the only healthy wideouts on the 53-man roster at practice Wednesday. Landry also missed last week’s game.

Saints head coach Dennis Allen wouldn’t make any predictions on whether Winston will be back under center this week against visiting Cincinnati.

“It’s another step in the right direction,” Allen said.

Winston is 1-2 as the starter this season, completing 63.5 percent of his passes for 858 yards. He has four touchdowns against five interceptions.

Dalton has thrown for 423 yards, with two touchdowns and one pick in two games.

–Field Level Media

Sep 11, 2022; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; New Orleans Saints wide receiver Michael Thomas (13) celebrates after a touchdown against the Atlanta Falcons in the fourth quarter at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Saints’ Michael Thomas out, Jameis Winston doubtful vs. Vikings

Wide receiver Michael Thomas won’t play Sunday for the New Orleans Saints against the Minnesota Vikings, and quarterback Jameis Winston is doubtful.

Head coach Dennis Allen had a grim injury update on Friday from London, where the two teams will meet in the first international game of the 2022 season.

Allen said Thomas will be sidelined with a foot injury, and back and ankle injuries likely will keep Winston from playing. Veteran Andy Dalton would start in his place.

“I think it’s doubtful that Jameis plays in the game, and so our plan right now is to have Andy ready to go,” Allen said. “We’ll see how things go overnight, but Andy will be ready to go if that’s the direction that we go.”

The Saints also have ruled out guard Andrus Peat (concussion) and safety Marcus Maye (ribs). Wide receiver Jarvis Landry (ankle) and running back Alvin Kamara (ribs) are questionable.

Winston, 28, has led the Saints to a 1-2 record this season. He’s completed 63.5 percent of his passes for 858 yards with four touchdowns. He’s thrown five interceptions, which ties him for the league lead.

A two-time All-Pro, the 29-year-old Thomas has 16 receptions for 171 yards with three touchdown catches in the first three games of the season.

–Field Level Media

Sep 25, 2022; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston (2) is sacked by Carolina Panthers safety Jeremy Chinn (21) in the third quarter at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Saints’ Jameis Winston, Michael Thomas sit out practice again

New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston and wide receiver Michael Thomas did not practice for a second straight day on Thursday in London.

Despite consecutive absences, Winston (back, ankle) still is expected to be under center when the Saints (1-2) “host” the Minnesota Vikings (2-1) on Sunday.

“I think they’re just making what was the best decision for him (Thursday), and then obviously it was a plan last week kind of where he was going to be limited throughout the week, and so we’ll see where we are at (on Friday),” Saints offensive coordinator Pete Carmichael said. “But it was just part of the plan as the day unfolded.

“I think the plan was just kind of see where he was at day to day and then see if we could get him out there. So hopefully, that happens (on Friday).

While Winston and Thomas (foot) sat out for the second straight day, wide receiver Jarvis Landry (ankle), guard Andrus Peat (concussion) and tackle Ryan Ramczyk (rest) were listed as limited in practice on Thursday.

Like Wednesday, Andy Dalton took first-team reps and would be in line to get the start should Winston be unable to play on Sunday. Winston injured his back in New Orleans’ 27-26 win over the Atlanta Falcons in the season opener on Sept. 11 before tweaking his ankle last week in practice.

Winston, 28, has completed 73 of 115 passes for 858 yards with four touchdowns and five interceptions in three games this season.

Dalton, 34, has yet to throw a pass this season. He completed 149 of 236 attempts for 1,515 yards with eight touchdowns and nine interceptions in eight games last season for the Chicago Bears.

Thomas, 29, is nursing a foot injury sustained in Sunday’s loss to the Panthers. The three-time Pro Bowl selection has 16 catches for 171 yards and a team-leading three receiving touchdowns this season.

Defensive end Marcus Davenport (shoulder), wide receiver Tre’Quan Smith (concussion) and safety J.T. Gray (shoulder) turned in full practices on Thursday after being limited on Wednesday.

Running back Alvin Kamara (rib), cornerback Paulson Adebo (ankle), safety Marcus Maye (rib), wide receiver Deonte Harty (foot) and tight end Taysom Hill (ribs) were limited in Thursday’s practice.

–Field Level Media

Sep 25, 2022; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston (2) looks to pass in the second quarter at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Saints’ Jameis Winston, Michael Thomas not spotted at practice

New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston and wide receiver Michael Thomas were absent from practice on Wednesday in London.

Andy Dalton took first-team reps and versatile jack-of-all-trades Taysom Hill also took snaps at quarterback in place of Winston, who is nursing both back and ankle injuries. Winston injured his back in New Orleans’ 27-26 win over the Atlanta Falcons in the season opener on Sept. 11 before tweaking his ankle last week in practice.

Head coach Dennis Allen said he expects Winston to practice Thursday.

Winston, 28, has completed 73 of 115 passes for 858 yards with four touchdowns and five interceptions in three games this season for the Saints (1-2), who “host” the Minnesota Vikings (2-1) on Sunday.

Dalton, 34, has yet to throw a pass this season. He completed 149 of 236 attempts for 1,515 yards with eight touchdowns and nine interceptions in eight games last season for the Chicago Bears.

Hill, 32, was ruled inactive for New Orleans’ 22-14 loss to the host Carolina Panthers last Sunday. He had been nursing an injury to his ribs.

He has yet to throw a pass in two games this season. He has seven rushes for 95 yards and a touchdown and one catch for two yards while playing as a tight end.

Hill threw for a career-high 979 yards to go along with four touchdowns and five interceptions in 2021.

Thomas, 29, is nursing a toe injury sustained in Sunday’s loss to the Panthers. The three-time Pro Bowl selection had 16 catches for 171 yards and a team-leading three receiving touchdowns this season.

–Field Level Media

Sep 11, 2022; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara (41) prepares for a game against the Atlanta Falcons at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Saints RB Alvin Kamara (ribs) sits out practice

New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara did not practice on Thursday, raising questions about his availability for this weekend’s game against the visiting Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Kamara, who is dealing with ailing ribs, is trending in the wrong direction after being listed as a limited participant in Wednesday’s practice.

Kamara recorded nine carries for 39 yards in New Orleans’ 27-26 victory over the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday.

A five-time Pro Bowl selection, Kamara has rushed for 4,277 yards and 47 touchdowns and caught 376 passes for 3,270 yards and 20 scores in 74 career games (46 starts) with the Saints.

Fellow running backs Mark Ingram, Dwayne Washington and Tony Jones Jr. likely would see an uptick in their respective workloads should Kamara sit out against the Buccaneers (1-0).

Like Ingram (ankle) and Washington (hamstring), quarterback Jameis Winston (back), defensive end Cameron Jordan (hip), wide receiver Tre’Quan Smith (shoulder), cornerback Alonte Taylor (hip) and tackle Landon Young (hip) were also listed as limited in practice on Thursday.

Cornerback Paulson Adebo (ankle) sat out practice on Thursday. He did not play in New Orleans’ season-opening game.

–Field Level Media

Jul 29, 2022; Metairie, LA, USA; New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston (2) works during training camp at Ochsner Sports Performance Center. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

Saints QB Jameis Winston (foot) leaves practice early

New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston tweaked his foot during practice on Monday and left the session early.

“He went in for some evaluation, I don’t have any update on that,” Saints head coach Dennis Allen said. “Kind of rolling out, I think it was in the 7-on-7 period, he kind of felt it tweak a little bit and so we wanted to go in and get evaluated.”

Winston is making a comeback from a torn ACL he suffered on Oct. 31 last season. He was 5-2 as the new starter under center in the post-Drew Brees era.

NFL Network reported over the weekend that Winston is progressing well but not yet at 100 percent.

Winston signed a two-year deal worth $28 million in March. The contract included $21 million guaranteed.

The No. 1 pick in the 2015 NFL Draft, Winston was cast aside before the 2020 season when the Buccaneers lured Tom Brady to Tampa in free agency and went on to win the franchise’s second Super Bowl.

Winston turned 28 in January. In 83 career games, he has 20,982 passing yards, 135 touchdown passes and 91 interceptions.

–Field Level Media

Oct 25, 2021; Seattle, Washington, USA; New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston (2) passes against the Seattle Seahawks during the fourth quarter at Lumen Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Saints view Jameis Winston as possible 2022 starting QB

The New Orleans Saints are still looking at Jameis Winston as their possible starting quarterback in 2022, general manager Mickey Loomis said Thursday.

Winston started the first seven games for New Orleans last season before tearing the ACL in his left knee against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Oct. 31. He’s still rehabilitating from his injury but figures to draw a lot of interest when free agency starts on March 16.

“Hopefully we can get something done with one of the guys that’s available,” Loomis said at the NFL Combine in Indianapolis. “Jameis is certainly an option for us, and hopefully we’re an option for him as well. We’ll go through the process here and see what happens.”

Winston stepped in after Drew Brees retired following the 2020 season and threw for 1,170 yards and 14 touchdowns, with three interceptions, before being injured. The reduction in picks stood out after Winston tossed an NFL-worst 30 for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2019 in his previous season as a starter.

New Orleans used three other starters at quarterback while going 9-8 in 2021. Taysom Hill started five games, Trevor Siemian made four starts and Ian Book received one.

The Saints own the No. 18 pick in the 2022 NFL Draft. They could look for a quarterback, but Loomis didn’t sound overly enthusiastic about that possibility.

“When you’re picking in the latter half of the draft, you just don’t know what’s going to fall to you No. 1, so it’s hard to target someone,” Loomis said. “Even if you decide you want to make a move forward, you’re limited in that — moving from where we’re at, at No. 18, into the top eight or 10 picks is really difficult, it’s expensive in terms of the draft capital that you have to give up. It can happen — it’s not impossible — but it’s pretty difficult to predict.”

It’s possible that no quarterbacks will be off the board when the Saints choose at No. 18, if they keep that draft position. Liberty’s Malik Willis, Pitt’s Kenny Pickett and Matt Corral of Mississippi are considered the top quarterback prospects. North Carolina’s Sam Howell could go late in the first round.

Nevada’s Carson Strong and Cincinnati’s Desmond Ridder could be available in the second round, when the Saints have the No. 47 overall pick.

–Field Level Media

Jan 9, 2021; Orchard Park, New York, USA; Indianapolis Colts quarterback Philip Rivers (17) jogs on the field prior to a AFC Wild Card game against the Buffalo Bills at Bills Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

QB Philip Rivers says he’ll listen if Saints call

Retired NFL quarterback Philip Rivers said he’ll listen if the New Orleans Saints give him a call.

Rivers, 39, told the Los Angeles Times on Tuesday he has not heard from the Saints, who lost starter Jameis Winston to a season-ending knee injury on Sunday.

Trevor Siemian relieved Winston in the 36-27 victory against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

New Orleans hopes to get Taysom Hill back from a concussion this week and also has rookie Ian Book available.

The Saints (5-2) host the Atlanta Falcons (3-4) on Sunday.

Rivers ranks fifth in NFL history in passing yards (63,440) and sixth in touchdown passes (421). The eight-time Pro Bowl selection compiled a 134-106 record in 17 seasons with the San Diego/Los Angeles Chargers (2004-19) and Indianapolis Colts (2020).

–Field Level Media

Oct 25, 2021; Seattle, Washington, USA; New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston (2) stands over center against the Seattle Seahawks during the second quarter at Lumen Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Saints’ Jameis Winston (torn ACL) out for season

New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston sustained a torn ACL and is done for the season, coach Sean Payton announced Monday.

An MRI confirmed the expected worst for Winston, who also endured damage to his MCL as well.

Winston was injured on a scramble in the second quarter when he was tackled awkwardly by Tampa Bay Buccaneers linebacker Devin White, who was penalized for a horse-collar tackle.

Winston had to be helped to the sideline after being unable to walk off by himself. He was then carted back to the locker room.

Trevor Siemian replaced Winston for the Saints (5-2), who held on for a 36-27 win over the Bucs.

Taysom Hill, New Orleans’ No. 2 quarterback, was unavailable on Sunday as he remains in concussion protocol after being injured three weeks ago.

“He’s progressing well. He’s on schedule,” Payton said of Hill.

Winston completed 6 of 10 passes for 56 yards and rushed four times for 40 yards before exiting. Siemian closed out the win by completing 16 of 29 passes for 159 yards and a touchdown.

Winston spent his first five NFL seasons with Tampa Bay. He is in his second campaign with the Saints.

–Field Level Media