5 facts about Denver Broncos HC Sean Payton you didn't know

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2. Sean Payton went to the same college as Broncos legend Mike Shanahan

This would be way less cool as a fact if the two had gone to UCLA or USC or some major school that everyone knows about. It's way cooler of a fact considering that Sean Payton and Mike Shanahan both went to Eastern Illinois, which actually has quite an illustrious NFL alumni list.

The hit rate out of Eastern Illinois seems pretty high.

Not only do you have two legendary NFL coaches in Sean Payton and Mike Shanahan, but you've also got quarterbacks Tony Romo and Jimmy Garoppolo. There have been 25 NFL players from Eastern Illinois, 15 of which were drafted. Another fun sub-fact within this fact? One of Sean Payton's teammates at Eastern Illinois -- Roy Banks -- was one of those 15 players drafted (5th round, Colts, 1987).

Another fun sub-fact within this fact? Mike Shanahan actually used a third-round pick on Eastern Illinois defensive back Chris Watson in the 1999 NFL Draft. Eastern Illinois helping out Eastern Illinois.

Perhaps the most amazing sub-fact within this sub-fact is that Mike Shanahan and Sean Payton actually had to duke it out in 2003 for the right to sign undrafted free agent quarterback Tony Romo. Payton was the offensive coordinator for the Dallas Cowboys under Bill Parcells from 2003-2005, and actually wanted to bring Romo with him to New Orleans when he was hired by the Saints in 2006.

Bill Parcells wouldn't trade Romo to the Saints, so Payton moved to acquiring Drew Brees. Romo became the starter for Dallas in 2006 and was one of the better QBs in the league for a decade. The fact that his NFL career started with a battle after the 2003 NFL Draft between the Broncos and Payton's Cowboys is riveting NFL history.

Maybe the Broncos should have just drafted Romo in 2003.