Massive news drops on the true decision maker for the Broncos

Denver Broncos Introduce Sean Payton as Head Coach
Denver Broncos Introduce Sean Payton as Head Coach / Matthew Stockman/GettyImages

The Denver Broncos hierarchy between George Paton and Sean Payton was up for debate for a while, but a recent report seems to give us a pretty clear indication as to who is making those decisions. Woody Paige gave Broncos Country a pretty clear picture of who has control inside the facilities.

Both George Paton and Sean Payton report to CEO Greg Penner, but this blurb from Paige is interesting:

"General manager George Paton has survived into his second season. Yet, Paton’s role as the head of football operations has changed. Payton and Paton report to Greg Penner, but Payton is the power in football personnel. Instead of making all the decisions in free agency and the draft, as he did with the previous coach, Paton this time won’t make a pick or a trade without Payton’s approval. Payton is the first Broncos coach with such control since Mike Shanahan and, before him, Dan Reeves. Lou Saban and John Ralston also were the Broncos' bosses. They ultimately were pushed out, and Reeves and Shanahan, who someday will be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, were fired."

Woody Paige

So, according to Woody Paige, Payton has power over the personnel. This is significant as it was mostly unknown who was making those decisions. George Paton, who is in his third season as the GM of the Denver Broncos, apparently has to get approval from Payton to make a pick or conduct a trade. It should be noted that Paige's statement is not 100 percent true and he should have done a little more research. Josh McDaniels, who was hired immediately after Mike Shanahan, had final personnel say over GM Brian Xanders. Then, when Gary Kubiak was brought in, Kubiak had significant personnel say alongside John Elway.

At any rate, if this is indeed true, the massive free agency haul and spending spree that the Denver Broncos went on this season was done with the final approval of Sean Payton. Payton had a similar setup during his time in New Orleans. He's gone on about how strong his relationship was with Saints' GM Mickey Loomis.

We'll see if George Paton truly wants to go forward with this set-up, but if the Broncos start winning, that may change and hesitancy that Paton might have at the moment, and there may be some fans in Broncos Country who might find this relieving that Payton has the final say.

George Paton has been an active GM but has made some head-scratching moves, so his being reigned in a bit might be for the better.

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