If the Saints are to beat the Bucs for a third consecutive time this season, they’ll likely have to do it without backup quarterback/wildcat running back/tight end/special teams ace Taysom Hill, per The Athletic Saints’ reporter Katherine Terrell. Hill suffered a knee injury against the Bears in the wild card round of the playoffs, and didn’t practice until Friday of this week, when he was a limited participant.
Hearing that Taysom Hill will not play today after suffering a knee injury in last week's game. Would be a big loss for the Saints with all of the things he can do offensively..
Offensive packages involving Hill have borne mixed results at best over the past few years, but the utility weapon has had a few of his most productive games as a non-starter against the Bucs. In two meetings this season Hill has 10 rushes for 67 yards while catching two passes for 35 yards. He’s also 3-for-3 passing for 86 yards, so it’s safe to say the Bucs have struggled to defend him this season. Hill is typically the team’s backup quarterback, starting four games in Drew Brees’ absence this season, so that honor will now fall to former Buc Jameis Winston, who was demoted to third-string quarterback in New Orleans at the beginning of November.
On the other hand, less Hill means more Brees, which has never been a good thing for Tampa Bay. The Bucs will also have to contend with a heavier dose of Alvin Kamara, as a quad injury to Latavius Murray has the Saints top backup running back expected to miss Sunday night’s game as well. The next leading healthy rusher after Kamara for New Orleans with Hill and Murray sidelined is Ty Montgomery, who has just 19 carries on the season. Murray hadn’t done much damage against Tampa Bay this season, with 25 carries for 87 yards and two catches for three yards across the two meetings.
Jon Ledyard is PewterReport.com's newest Bucs beat writer and has experience covering the Pittsburgh Steelers as a beat writer and analyzing the NFL Draft for several draft websites, including The Draft Network. Follow Ledyard on Twitter at @LedyardNFLDraft