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2 takeaways from the Saints win over the Chargers

Saints beat the Chargers to move to 2-0 in the preseason.

New Orleans Saints v Los Angeles Chargers Photo by John McCoy/Getty Images

1. Jameis Winston is one of the best backups QBs in football

Jameis had another solid game this week, completing 13 of 21 passes for 169 yards and no interceptions. He led the Saints to 13 of their 22 points while playing the entire first half. Including last week, Winston is 24/34 passing for 261 yards and a touchdown with no turnovers, all while playing primarily with the second team offense. Winston will backup Derek Carr this year, in the first season he enters as a backup since backing up Drew Brees in 2020. Carr provides much more consistency and stability, and there obviously shouldn’t be any whispers of a QB controversy here, but should Winston be forced into action this year, the Saints should still be able to win games and keep pace with him under center so long as he stays out of turnover trouble.

Kansas City Chiefs v New Orleans Saints Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images

2. The kicking battle is real

Wil Lutz has been the undisputed kicker for the New Orleans Saints since they signed him in 2016. However, following up a 2021 season in which he didn’t play a single game due to injury with the lowest FG% of his career might mean his job is not as secure going into 2023. Rookie Blake Grupe has gotten equal reps in the kicking game this preseason, and so far, has stepped up. Grupe has hit all three of his field goal, including the game winner in Week 1, and made his only extra point attempt. Granted, Lutz has also been perfect this preseason, making all four of his kicks and both extra points. Since neither kicker has distanced themselves in the preseason, it will be hard to tell if any change is imminent. I would say it is more likely they will stick with Lutz, as he is a proven commodity at a position that often goes overlooked but is very important to have reliability. I would bet Lutz will be the kicker Week 1, but do not be surprised if they decide to go with the younger Grupe if they think he has better upside.

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