Andy Dalton remains Saints’ starter, even though Jameis Winston is healthy

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Andy Dalton will remain the Saints’ starting quarterback even though Jameis Winston has now been cleared to play.

Saints head coach Dennis Allen announced today that Dalton is the starter for Sunday’s game against the Raiders. Allen said Winston is healthy and was a full participant in today’s practice, but Allen made the decision because he thinks it’s the best thing for the Saints’ offense.

Dalton has started the last four games, but that was ostensibly because Winston was recovering from back and ankle injuries. Today Allen made clear that Winston is healthy enough to play, but Dalton is starting anyway.

Neither Dalton nor Winston has been great this season, but Dalton has made fewer mistakes, and that’s likely the difference in Allen’s eyes. Even at 2-5, the Saints are only a game out of first place in the NFC South, and Allen believes that Dalton has the steadier hand that gives New Orleans the better chance to win.