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Finding a viable option at QB will be paramount for Dennis Allen’s second stint as a head coach

Dennis Allen
Photo courtesy of USA Today.

On Tuesday, February 8, 2022, the New Orleans Saints begin a new era. Defensive coordinator Dennis Allen became the 11th head coach to roam the sidelines for the Black and Gold. Based on Allen’s tone at the introductory press conference, he seems prepared for the road ahead. He stated that his plans for the Saints are to be very aggressive on the offensive side of the football and maintain the same level of dominance on defense.

For those aspirations to manifest, the Saints must carefully address the most critical asset on the team, which is the quarterback position. Many head coaches such as Herm Edwards, Rex Ryan, and Mike Singletary underachieved for most of their careers due to not having the right guy under center at quarterback.

All three head coaches had great schemes and a hunger to be successful, but ultimately it would mean nothing because of inadequate output at the quarterback position. Ryan started his tenure as the New York Jets head coach by appearing in back-to-back AFC championship games in 2009 and 2010. His first two seasons in New York were the only two playoff appearances during his tenure with the team.

His second stint with the Buffalo Bills was no different as he only lasted two seasons with a sub-500 record. Will Allen have the same fate as Ryan and other counterparts that have had the opportunity to become a head coach for a second time? It all depends on how Allen and his coaching staff approach the situation.

In 2021, the question of the Saints having Drew Brees’s successor on the roster was not answered. Jameis Winston started the year with a 5-2 record but was lost for the year after suffering a torn ACL injury against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Backups Taysom Hill and Trevor Semien yielded ample results as the Saints’ offense sputtered for the remainder of the season.

New Orleans has three different options for filling the void at the quarterback position. They can re-sign Winston to a cap-friendly deal, draft a QB in the upcoming draft, or they can explore the trade market. Reports state that signal-callers such as Jimmy Garoppolo, Russell Wilson, and Aaron Rodgers could be on the move. The Saints must carefully weigh all options on the table right now when it comes to finding the right guy under center. The AFC divisional-round matchup between the Buffalo Bills and the Kansas City Chiefs showed how important it is to have the quarterback position solved for the next 10 to 15 years.

As a Saints fan, do you honestly believe that Taysom Hill can go toe-to-toe with a buzz saw like Patrick Mahomes or Josh Allen? Right now in the NFC, the quality of opposing QBs is at an all-time low, but it will not remain that way forever.  Whether through the draft or the trade market, finding the right QB could mean Allen may have a Pete Carroll-like resurgence during his second stint as a head coach.

For those that may not know, Carroll failed in his previous two stops as an NFL head coach before joining the Seattle Seahawks. The third-round selection of Russell Wilson changed the entire trajectory of how Carroll was viewed as a head coach. With Wilson under center in Seattle, Coach Carroll led the team to eight playoff appearances in four division titles, including a Super Bowl championship in 2013. Allen could have same type of resurgence that we have witnessed with Carroll over the years if the right decisions are made at the most crucial position on the team. As stated before, New Orleans is only three to four players away on offense from becoming a championship contender in the NFC once again.

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Meet Derrick Branch, the founder and chief wordsmith at Strike 7 Sports. With a sharp focus on the NFL and the NBA, Derrick's expertise in sports is matched only by his passion for sharing it with others. He holds a bachelor's degree in journalism and mass communications from the prestigious University of Arizona Global. Let his insightful and engaging writing take you to the heart of the action.

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