NFL Hot Press: Saints Could Trade Sean Payton

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Combine Logo Saints Could Trade Sean Payton

Updated March 3, 2022
By Charlie Campbell. Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell.

The NFL was shocked when long-time New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton decided to step down from coaching after the 2021 season. The 58-year old Payton had led the Saints to a Super Bowl and guided New Orleans to a .600 winning percentage over the past decade. The Saints opted to stay the course by elevating defensive coordinator Dennis Allen to the head coaching position, but Payton left the door open to return to coaching in the future.

In speaking with Saints sources, the team have Payton under contract, so if he decides to return to coaching and wants to coach for another team, that team would have to trade for Payton. New Orleans’ contract with Payton runs through the 2024 season, so that is 2-year window of time for Payton to wait out for freedom. Saints sources say the organization would want at least two first-round picks for Payton, so he won’t come cheap to any team that hopes to hire them. Perhaps Payton will stay in the TV booth all of that time to wait for the freedom of choice. But if Payton wants to return to coaching in 2023 or 2024, a team will have to make an expensive trade with the Saints.