4 completely lame arguments why Sean Payton was a bad hire for Broncos
2. The Denver Broncos paid way too much (picks, cash) for Sean Payton
Alright, let’s talk about this, because I’m as guilty as anyone of preferring alternatives (Jim Harbaugh, specifically) considering the draft compensation going to the New Orleans Saints in any deal for Sean Payton. It’s fair to not want to trade draft picks for a coach, because you don’t get to see the coach celebrating in the end zone after a touchdown, nor do you get to see them do a sack dance.
You don’t get to buy their jersey, and folks want to be able to look at the tangible differences a draft pick can make on the field and dream about it, discuss it, etc.
I get it, because I love the NFL Draft as much as anyone. With that being said, draft picks are negligible by comparison to having a great head coach and quarterback. The Broncos have certainly paid the price in the last calendar year to fill those two spots, haven’t they?
All in all, the Broncos have traded:
- 2022 1st-round pick
- 2023 1st-round pick
- 2023 1st-round pick (from Dolphins)
- 2022 2nd-round pick
- 2023 2nd-round pick
- 2024 2nd-round pick
- 2022 5th-round pick
- DL Shelby Harris
- QB Drew Lock
- TE Noah Fant
And they have received:
- QB Russell Wilson
- HC Sean Payton
- 2024 3rd-round pick
- 2022 4th-round pick
Now, is that a hefty price to pay? Absolutely. But scoffing at the cost of acquiring valuable assets is the practice of losing teams. Things need to start playing out on the field, of course. The Broncos were bad in 2022, Russell Wilson’s first year with the team, and they are banking on Payton helping turn the ship around.
They have every reason to believe he can.
This guy is top 25 all time when it comes to winning percentage as a head coach. He had a top-10 offense in 12 of his 15 years with the Saints. It was a regular occurrence for the Saints to be among the league’s top five offenses. This is not somebody who rode the coattails of Drew Brees, either. Payton helped make Brees and Brees helped Payton’s offense hum.
It’s funny how quickly and easily people forget that the Chargers — for years — plotted moving on from Brees. He wasn’t good enough for them. They didn’t believe in him as the future. They drafted Philip Rivers and sat him for three seasons before trading Brees to the Saints. Brees was a cast-off, an injury risk, and people act like Sean Payton was Adam Gase inheriting Peyton Manning.
The cost to acquire these two valuable assets for the team was high. People will criticize it until there is proof on the field that it can actually work. That’s fair, but complaining about the cost to get these guys is ridiculous, especially when you’re complaining about the cost financially. Speaking specifically to the cost of signing Payton to a likely-record NFL head coach contract, who cares?
It’s not your money.
It’s not your money, and the draft picks? Well, the option of having a great head coach versus having the 29th pick in the Draft? That’s a trade you make every day of the week.