The New Orleans Saints lost once again Thursday night at home vs the Dallas Cowboys, 27-17. It was their fifth consecutive loss that has seen the Saints go from NFC South contention to being out of the playoffs. New Orleans is now 5-7 and sit 12th in the NFC standings.

Injuries have been a big part of the team's fall. Pro Bowl running back Alvin Kamara has missed the last four games with a knee injury. They also lost their starting quarterback Jameis Winston back in Week 8 due to a torn ACL.

As the losses begin to mount up for the Saints, the team's future is becoming cloudy.

Here are 3 key takeaways from the Thursday night loss to the Cowboys.

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Saints 3 Takeaways from Week 13 loss to Cowboys

3. Taysom Hill is not the future at quarterback

New Orleans Saints quarterback Taysom Hill has been a bit of an enigma. He spelled Drew Brees a bunch of times the last couple of seasons, and at times looked like he might be the future of the franchise at the position.

Sadly, that all came crashing down Thursday night. Taysom Hill had his worst game as a pro, throwing four interceptions in the loss to Dallas.

Hill still moved the ball at times, rushing for over 100 yards himself. But his inability to make consistent accurate throws and decision making have to leave the Saints organization pondering the future.

2. The Saints defense gave New Orleans a chance to win

Despite allowing 27 points, the Saints defense played well enough to win the game Thursday night. That point total is not at all indicative of how well they played.

They bottled up Ezekiel Elliott all night, with Zeke only rushing for 45 yards on 13 carries. Dak Prescott and the passing game was out of sync all night. Seemingly every throw from Prescott was into a tight window. The coverage was mostly excellent. Even Dak's one touchdown pass to Michael Gallup took an exceptional effort.

If it wasn't for a single run by Tony Pollard, a 58-yard touchdown run to the outside, Dallas might not have even won the game. Taysom Hill's four interceptions put the Saints defense in a bad position time and again. It left many wondering how long could the Saints hold up.

NFL reporter Doug Kyed had a comical take on the situation.

Ultimately, New Orleans couldn't muster enough offense to pull out the victory. But the defense absolutely did their job and held one of the league's best offenses in check.

1. New Orleans might be stuck in NFL purgatory

It's clear that you can flush the Saints season down the toilet. There is no indication that this team will turn it around and with only five games remaining, a top 12 pick might be what they are looking at next year.

But the future of the franchise is in weird spot.

On one hand, they have a lot of talent on the roster. Defensively, they have one of the best cover corners in the league in Marshon Lattimore, a good linebacking core with Demario Davis and Kwon Alexander, and Cameron Jordan anchoring the front four.

Offensively, they have one of the best players in football in Kamara. But everyone knows this is a quarterback driven league. If you have one, you can compete. If you don't, you won't. They might have lost Jameis Winston for the season but is he really that quarterback that can take them to the next level?

I think we have seen enough throughout his career to say that he is not. He is too inconsistent and turnover prone. The Saints signed Winston in the off season to a one-year, $5.5 million deal. Will they re-sign him coming off his ACL tear or will the team look elsewhere.

They likely will not be drafting high enough to land an elite quarterback, leaving NFL purgatory a possible future.