Th Denver Broncos are not wasting any time in their search for their next head coach.
Schefter also reported that the NFL ruled that any in-person interview with Payton cannot be conducted until at least January 17.
The Saints still own Payton’s rights because he retired while remaining under contract with the team. In 2019, Payton and the Saints agreed to a five-year extension that would keep the head coach under contract through the 2024 season.
According to Schefter, the “Broncos and Saints do not have to – and haven’t – agreed to the compensation that would go to New Orleans if Denver hired Sean Payton, per sources. This would come later if talks between Denver and Payton go well.”
What Would a Trade Cost Denver for Sean Payton?
If talks go well between the Broncos and Payton, the next step would then be to start talking with the Saints at what it would cost to trade for the former Super Bowl-winning head coach.
“The Saints believe Payton, who went 152-89 in 16 seasons with New Orleans and led the Saints to the only Super Bowl championship in franchise history, is worth what other great coaches have been valued at and then some,” per Schefter.
Let’s look back at some of the most notable head coaching trades in NFL history:
Bill Parcells: In 1997, the New England Patriots traded Parcells to the New York Jets for first, second, third, and a fourth-round pick along with $300,000 donated to charity.
Bill Belichick: In 2000, New England sent first, fourth, and seventh-round picks to the New York Jets for Belichick along with a fifth and seventh-round pick.
Jon Gruden: In 2002, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers traded away two first-round picks, two second-round picks, and $8 million to the Oakland Raiders for Gruden.
Many believe that Denver will likely have to trade at least one first-round pick to New Orleans for Payton. Right now, the Broncos’ first-round pick is sitting at the 29th spot in the 2023 NFL draft.
Denver’s Owners Will Be Aggressive in Coaching Search
After the Broncos fired head coach Nathaniel Hackett, Broncos owner and CEO Greg Penner said, “I’ll lead a thorough process with input from our other owners and from George [Paton], who I have confidence in as our general manager. This will be a crucial offseason for us across our football operations; that’s coaching, personnel and support staff. We’ve got to get this right.”
Penner also mentioned that the Broncos need a leader for the organization.
“I’ve worked with a lot of great CEOs, and it starts with really strong leadership. I think that’s going to be the most critical factor here in a head coach. Obviously, the Xs and Os are important, but we need a strong leader for this organization that’s focused on winning. That starts with culture, it’s instilling a sense of accountability, discipline, and we need an identity on offense. At the starting point, it’s got to be about culture and leadership, and those characteristics are what we’ve focused on the most.”
On January 1, Schefter also reported that the Broncos’ ownership group is expected to be “Ultra-aggressive” in doing whatever they need to do to land the candidate that they want the most.
“The Walton-Penner group paid a record price of $4.65 billion for the Broncos last offseason and is expected to use that same energy and determination to land a new coach,” said Schefter.