Texans announce they interviewed Sean Payton for HC position
Former New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

Texans announce they interviewed Sean Payton for head coaching position

Houston announced it conducted an interview with former Saints head coach Sean Payton. A trade for the Super Bowl-winning coach has the potential to be equally beneficial to Payton, the Saints and Texans.

Payton addressed what he believes would be the proper compensation in a deal with New Orleans on Monday.

"I think ultimately the compensation for the Saints would be mid or later first-round pick," said Payton in an interview with Colin Cowherd.

The Texans have ample draft capital. Houston owns Cleveland's 2023 first-round pick (13th overall) and a third-round pick (73rd overall), giving the organization five draft picks in the top 73 of this year's draft.

Along with those two picks, Houston also has its own picks in the first round (second overall), second round (33rd overall) and third round (65th overall). The Texans have 11 picks in total, all in the first six rounds of the draft.

Payton led New Orleans to a win in Super Bowl XLIV in 2010. He helped turn around a franchise with hardly any postseason success — one playoff win in five appearances between 1967-2005 — before he arrived. 

His offenses consistently ranked near the top of the league and New Orleans won four consecutive division titles from 2017-2020. During his 15-year career with the Saints, Payton posted a record of 152-89 and coached the franchise to nine wins in nine playoff appearances.

He said earlier this season that he's interested in joining an organization with a strong front office and culture. The Texans don't check those boxes after firing their last two coaches after one season apiece. The franchise will have its fourth head coach in four seasons in 2023.

Like he did in New Orleans, Payton could lend credibility and stability to a franchise in desperate need of an image repair.

Agreeing on a contract with Houston would likely put an end to Payton's pipe dream of teaming with Bucs QB Tom Brady next year. With the second overall pick, the Texans can pair Payton with one of the top QBs in the draft class in an attempt to set the franchise up for sustained success.

Houston needs to make a splash at head coach to give its fanbase a reason to be excited. New Orleans needs draft assets to accelerate its rebuild. The Saints likely won't find a better deal than what the Texans can offer.

A deal between the two needs to happen. Neither side can afford to take another loss.

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