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Jameis Winston Agrees to New 1-Year Saints Contract After Drew Brees' Retirement

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistMarch 16, 2021

New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston (2) warms up before an NFL wild-card playoff football game against the Chicago Bears in New Orleans, Sunday, Jan. 10, 2021. (AP Photo/Butch Dill)
Butch Dill/Associated Press

The partnership between Jameis Winston and the New Orleans Saints will continue after the two sides agreed to a one-year deal on Monday.

Tom Pelissero of NFL Network reported the one-year deal has a base value of $5.5 million. According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the contract could max out at $12 million. 

Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium was the first to report the deal.

After the news broke, Winston sent a message to Saints fans on Twitter:

Jameis Winston @Jaboowins

Who Dat! ⚜️⚜️⚜️ #NOLA #DreamForever

This comes after Drew Brees announced his retirement.

Winston spent last season with the Saints after signing a one-year deal worth $1.1 million. He was used sparingly as the No. 3 quarterback behind Brees and Taysom Hill in head coach Sean Payton's system. 

When Brees went down with fractured ribs and a punctured lung in the second half of New Orleans' Week 10 game against the San Francisco 49ers, Winston finished the game as the team's quarterback. He went 6-of-10 for 63 yards in a 27-13 win. 

Payton turned to Hill as the starting quarterback until Brees was able to return. Winston did have one highlight-reel moment for the Saints in their divisional-round loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He was used on a trick play in which he took a reverse behind the line of scrimmage, then hit Tre'Quan Smith for a 56-yard touchdown pass. 

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

JAMEIS THROWS A TD TO TRE’QUAN SMITH 🤯 (via @NFL) https://t.co/OkhBy0g3ly

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Winston has been an inconsistent player throughout his NFL career, but the highs can be spectacular when everything is working. He threw for over 4,000 yards in three of his five seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, including a league-high 5,109 yards in 2019. 

Of course, the Florida State product also led the NFL with 30 interceptions during the 2019 campaign. He's turned the ball over 111 times (88 interceptions, 23 lost fumbles) in 76 career games. 

Until Winston proves himself capable of protecting the ball, he will likely have to continue at least battling for the starting spot. He showed in last year's playoff game with the Saints that he can make plays if the system is designed to help him. 

It will be up to Payton to figure out the best way to maximize Winston's ability in 2021. 

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