How can the Arizona Cardinals sell the head coaching job to Sean Payton?
By Sion Fawkes
The Arizona Cardinals have an interview scheduled with Sean Payton this Thursday, and the hard part will be to convince him to come to the desert.
In a previous article, I stated the Arizona Cardinals head coaching position ranked lower than those open positions for the Indianapolis Colts, Carolina Panthers, Houston Texans, and Denver Broncos. But that doesn’t mean the Cardinals can’t shock the NFL world and land Sean Payton.
ESPN’s NFL Nation outlined three ways general manager Monti Ossenfort can use to win over Payton, and the first is quite the laugher, even if it is true. Payton lives in Los Angeles, so it’s only a short flight to the desert.
They also cited the desert’s “dry heat” as another selling point. But really, a better argument could have been a promise to just keep the roof closed so it could feel like Payton’s coaching in the Superdome.
But all jokes aside, Ossenfort can still sell the job to Payton thanks to the Cardinals talented offense. Okay, talented on paper, that is. Kyler Murray is a stagnant quarterback, I get it – But so was Drew Brees once upon a time before he linked up with Payton. In fact, Brees was also coming off a major injury when Payton took the gig and the quarterback signed with New Orleans.
Arizona Cardinals current offense could win over Sean Payton
Then of course, you got Marquise Brown and DeAndre Hopkins, but don’t forget about Zach Ertz. At this point, it seems as though the Cardinals will trade Hopkins, but they could rescind that if Payton comes to the desert in “win-now” mode.
You also can’t forget about the productive Greg Dortch, who is an Exclusive Rights Free Agent and could easily return. Tight end Trey McBride also showed his worth late in the year, performing well when Ertz went down with a torn ACL.
They also have a sound left tackle in D.J. Humphries, plus a serviceable running back in James Conner. There are holes on this offense, but those holes are nothing Payton and Ossenfort can’t fill in free agency and the NFL Draft.
In short, this isn’t my preferred method, as I’ve called for the Cardinals to trade Hopkins, even try to find a trading partner for Ertz if anyone’s willing to take a chance on his knee, and pile up draft picks. And yes, that means I’d rather have someone other than Payton if it means collecting more picks and building this team through the draft.
But if there is one way to sell this team to Sean Payton, Ossenfort must sell it through the potential that this offense has. That would mean keeping Hopkins, likely keeping Ertz, and moving forward to fill holes on the line and running back.
Payton would need to see that the offense can win in 2023. If he see this, along with those jokes about the ideal location, then the former New Orleans Saints coach might just come to the desert.
Article Source: What do the Panthers, Texans, Cardinals and Broncos have to offer the Saints for Payton? by NFL Nation
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