2. Mac Jones (trade target, Patriots)
Many in Broncos Country loathe the idea of Mac Jones becoming the team's next starting quarterback, but Jones might be one of the most realistic potential options for the Denver Broncos in the 2024 offseason for a variety of reasons.
We have Payton's history of reclamation projects, for starters.
Next, you have reports from 2021 about the Saints attempting to jump ahead of New England in the NFL Draft before the Patriots eventually pulled the trigger on drafting Mac Jones.
So as recently as 2021, Sean Payton thought highly enough of Mac Jones to try and trade up to get him, although it didn't work out. Here's what Payton had to say in his evaluation of Mac Jones that year just after the Saints played the Patriots in a regular season game:
"He was someone that we were really high on. I think he processes information fast. At Alabama if you watch closely his tape, the ball comes out, decisions are made fast. I think he sees the field horizontally as well as vertically well. He has the arm to make the throws that you want.- Sean Payton on Mac Jones
His decision-making and processing are where I felt were really strong suits with him and I think he's handling it well. It's not easy to all of a sudden come in and start week one as a rookie, but he's a smart player."
Say what you will about Mac Jones, but his ability to get rid of the ball quickly and play in an offense that is predicated on rhythm, timing, and tempo?
Well, that screams "Sean Payton" to me. I wouldn't be surprised in the slightest if the Denver Broncos made a move for Mac Jones and put him in a "better" overall situation.