New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston has torn ACL, head coach Sean Payton confirms

After his left leg was bent on a tackle, Saints QB Jameis Winston requires help to get off the field. (0:36).
METAIRIE (La. Coach Sean Payton confirmed that Jameis Winston, New Orleans Saints quarterback, tore the ACL in Jameis Winston's left knee and suffered MCL damage on Sunday.

Winston sustained injuries in a horse-collar attack by Devin White, Tampa Bay Buccaneers' linebacker, during the first quarter of New Orleans' 36–27 win.

Payton declined to discuss whether Trevor Siemian or Taysom Hill would be the Saints' starter going into the home game with the Atlanta Falcons. He said that he knew it would be "the $6 million" question.

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Payton repeatedly insisted that the Saints do not plan to hire a new quarterback.

Payton stated that he was satisfied with the "quarterback room", referring to a group that includes Ian Book, a rookie fourth-round pick.

If he were healthy, Hill, 31 years old, would be the most likely candidate - he was 3-1 last year as Drew Brees' replacement starter and fought Winston in an open race for the job. Hill has been sidelined since Week 5 by a concussion.

He's doing well. He is making progress. He is on track. Payton spoke highly of Hill's progress and said, "All that's great." Payton, however, said that Hill would be ready to play next week when he was asked.

"We will carefully consider what is best for our team during this game. As the week goes on, we will decide how we want it to go. We'll be ready for Sunday," Payton said. He said that the first phase of the game plans is typically formulated by Tuesday night. We'll work hard on the plan, listen to what we learn in the training room, and then be ready to go.

After Sunday's impressive performance, Siemian (29), is an obvious candidate for the Saints' starting job. Siemian entered the game with the game tied at 7-7. He completed 16 of 29 passes for an impressive 159 yards and one touchdown, with no turnovers. Siemian has a record of 13-12 as a starter in his career, including 12-12 with Denver Broncos (2016-2017) and 0-1 with New York Jets (2019).

After reviewing Monday's tape, Payton stated that "man, he did an excellent job." He had a lot of plays with a free rusher, and he always gets the ball out on-time. He played with poise and made smart decisions. He did what you would expect from someone who is just starting out in the game. I think he handled the situation very well. He was very pleased with the tape.

Payton stated that Winston was the one who made him cry after Sunday's game.

Winston, 27, wanted to revive his career with Saints. He had spent his first five seasons from 2015-2019 with the Buccaneers and was last year as a backup for Hill and Brees in New Orleans.

Payton stated that Winston was 95 percent of 151 passers (59%) and gained 1,170 yards with 14 touchdowns and three interceptions. "We felt like we'd seen the leadership, arm strength and all that stuff. We often talk about the fact that they're going to evaluate you based on your record. He was 4 years old. Although it wasn't always perfect we were getting the results we wanted. It was a crucial part of what we were doing.

Winston sustained injuries when White pulled him by his jersey shoulder, forcing him to land awkwardly. Winston's left leg was pinned behind his back as he touched the turf. He was examined by trainers and medical staff before being helped to limp slowly to the sideline. Later, he was assisted onto a cart to be driven back to his locker room.

Payton stated Monday that it was a "classic field-turf injury".

Payton stated, "I don’t believe that happens on grass." "I know that artificial surfaces are 28% more likely for a player to be injured, and this is one of those cases," Payton said.