Saints QB Taysom Hill feared to have suffered mallet finger injury; could require surgery

Thursday night has not been kind to quarterbacks' fingers this season.

Taysom Hill is feared to have suffered a torn tendon in his middle finger that may necessitate surgery at some point, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported, with more tests forthcoming.

The injury Hill is feared to have suffered, known as mallet finger, is part of what Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson suffered in Seattle's Thursday night game against the Rams in Week 5, sending him to a month-long repair, recovery and rehab process.

Hill made the start for New Orleans in Thursday's 27-17 loss to the Cowboys in a move made by coach Sean Payton to inject some life into an offense that had grown drowsier by the week and played a role in four straight losses. Through a half of football, the change seemed to be working to a degree, with the Saints trailing the Cowboys by six points at the break.

But Hill's performance dropped off in the second half, throwing three interceptions (including a pick-six) that ended New Orleans' hopes of mounting a comeback. It's likely the finger injury had plenty to do with the second-half struggles, as Hill could be seen wearing half of a splint on the sideline early in the third quarter.

For the game, he completed fewer than 50 percent of his attempts and threw four interceptions. He also threw two touchdown passes, included one to Deonte Harris that required the speedster to do almost all of the work after the catch.

Most importantly, Hill's unpredictable nature -- he rushed for 101 yards on 11 attempts -- unlocked the Saints' offense and allowed them to be at least somewhat competitive with a leading team in the NFC.

Now, they're looking at a once-again grim situation under center. If Hill can't go, it's likely back to Trevor Siemian, who was adequate in his first two performances as a starter before dropping off a cliff in his last two. New Orleans could also turn to rookie Ian Book.

A timeline for return would be difficult to ascertain at this point, as Wilson sped past his minimum time of six weeks missed by returning in five after surgery. Hill might not need surgery, but it's too early to tell. With the Saints needing a victory in the worst way to stay in the playoff hunt, we'll simply have to stay tuned.

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