Sean Payton trade package from Broncos gives Saints renewed hope

Sean Payton, New Orleans Saints. (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images)
Sean Payton, New Orleans Saints. (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images) /

The New Orleans Saints are trading head coach Sean Payton to the Denver Broncos, and the return they are getting makes them big winners.

The NFL head coaching carousel moved a bit slowly once the regular-season ended. Entering Tuesday, Frank Reich was the only head coaching hire of the cycle after agreeing to terms with the Carolina Panthers. For the Denver Broncos, they have set their attention on a variety of targets, including New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton. It seemed as though the Broncos were swinging and missing, but finally, they hit their home run in the bottom of the ninth.

According to ESPN senior NFL insider Adam Schefter, the Broncos and the Saints finalized compensation for Payton to be their next head coach. Given that Payton is under contract through the 2024 season with the Saints, the Broncos had to give up some draft capital to acquire him.

Schefter followed up by saying that the Broncos are sending their 2023 first-rounder and 2024 second-rounder to the Saints in exchange for Payton and their 2024 third-rounder.

Saints big winners of Sean Payton trade with Broncos

Moving on from Payton was going to be a difficult choice to make for the Saints, considering he did bring the franchise their first Super Bowl victory back in the 2009 season. However, he did step down after last season, and is now looking to make a return after a one-year hiatus. Considering Payton is under contract, New Orleans wanted a big return like the then-Oakland Raiders got for Jon Gruden.

The Saints were without a first-round pick this upcoming NFL Draft due in part to their trade with the Philadelphia Eagles. It was a very complex trade in which both teams traded multiple draft picks with one another. Let’s take a look:

  • Saints received: No. 16, No. 19, and No. 194 (sixth-round) overall picks in 2022
  • Eagles received: No. 18, No. 101 (third-round), and No. 237 overall picks in 2022, No. 10 overall pick in 2023, and a 2024 second-round pick

Entering NFL Draft week, the Saints were scheduled to make their first selection in the second round. That is because, as you can see above, the Saints first-round pick in 2023 went to the Eagles, who are playing in Super Bowl 57. So, the reigning NFC Champions end up with a top 10 pick. Somewhere, the three NFC East rivals of the Eagles are cursing the Saints’ name.

But, by trading Payton, New Orleans now has a first-round pick back, albeit late in the round. The Broncos got a first-round pick back after moving their first-rounder (and more) to the Seattle Seahawks for Russell Wilson. By the trade deadline, the Broncos sent linebacker Bradley Chubb to the Miami Dolphins in exchange for a first-round pick, which originally came from the San Francisco 49ers. Since San Francisco finished as the runner-up to the Eagles, that pick was locked in at the No. 29 spot. So, that No. 29 overall pick now goes to the Saints.

Are you following? We know it’s a lot.

Saints fans can now make plans on the first night of the NFL Draft because the team will now be making a pick in the first round. As for the Broncos, they once again moved draft capital, but for a Super Bowl-winning coach that will be tasked with getting the most out of Wilson, who struggled mightily this season.

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