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CSC Mailbag: Will Kwon Alexander return to the Saints?

That and more in this week’s mailbag.

New Orleans Saints v Philadelphia Eagles Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images

The NFL season might not yet officially be over, but the New Orleans Saints are looking ahead to the 2021 offseason. With that in mind, there are plenty of questions about what the Saints will be do this offseason in preparation for the 2021 season. There might be more questions than answers right now, so we took a few of your pressing questions off Twitter in this week’s CSC Mailbag:

“Well other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, how was the play?”

Saying “besides his fumbles” is a pretty big thing to just sweep under the rug. Our own Andrew Bell identified Taysom’s small hands could create a propensity to fumble the ball back before last season started.

But it’s legitimately not just about the fumbles. Andrew also gave a great breakdown of how Taysom just misses too many throws he should otherwise make:

Whether it’s low on an out route, high on a curl or behind on a crossing route, there are too many displays of inaccuracy on tape right now to feel super confident in his ability to anchor a passing offense. It showed up on straight dropbacks, roll-outs, as well as plays he was escaping from pressure.

It’s not just about the fumbles (which is a big deal). It’s about the fact that Taysom Hill does not show that he can consistently make quarterback-type plays. He’s best suited for his role as a Jack of all Trades-type, while still a master of none.

Should the Saints trade Michael Thomas? No.

Could the Saints trade Michael Thomas? Anything is possible.

The Saints have shown a willingness to trade elite offensive talent if it helps improve the team overall - think Jimmy Graham to Seattle or Brandin Cooks to the Patriots. It would be a surprising move, though, for the Saints to trade Michael Thomas just one year removed from signing him to a huge contract extension. Thomas is a player who can help you win now and in the future (he’s signed through the 2024 season), so the Saints don’t need to get rid of him in a rebuild.

On a more practical note, while Thomas was the 2019 Offensive Player of the Year, his 2020 season was marred with injury. Trading him now would be trading at the absolute lowest point of his career. While the Saints could technically trade him away, it would likely have to be because an offer blew them away rather than the Saints actively shopping him.

It depends on what prediction you’re operating with.

It’s safe to assume the cap will be around $175 million in 2021 (a substantial drop from the $210 million cap from 2020), but there is still a chance for something in the $195 million range when the official cap is announced in about a month.

The Saints will still have to pay $2 million to Kwon in 2021 for an injury settlement regardless of whether Kwon plays for the Saints, a different team, or not at all next season. Because of this, I fully expect the Saints to reach an arrangement to keep Kwon under contract in 2021 and pay him a low base salary (something only slightly more than the $2 million he’s already guaranteed) with incentives built in for playing time or other milestones in 2021. It would likely just be a one or two-year deal, giving Kwon another chance to hit the free agent market once he’s fully healthy.

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