3 reasons why Sean Payton might consider signing with Texans over Cardinals or Broncos as new HC

Houston Texans v New Orleans Saints
Sean Payton during Houston Texans v New Orleans Saints

Sean Payton seems to be the flavor of the season, with the Houston Texans, Arizona Cardinals and Denver Broncos all receiving permission to talk to the former New Orleans Saints head coach. It may set up quite a bidding war for his services.

However, much will depend on where Sean Payton himself wants to go. As a Super Bowl winner, his concern will be compensation and whether he can forge a winning team. The Denver Broncos can offer a more-than-competent quarterback in Russell Wilson, even though it was unavailable this season. They have a great defense, and the team can offer him the compensation he desires with their new owners.

The Arizona Cardinals also have a strong case to make. They made it to the playoffs last season, something neither the Broncos nor the Texans could do. They might be easier to tweak and fix immediately than the other teams. The Cardinals also have a set quarterback in Kyler Murray, which might influence Sean Payton to go there.

But does that mean that the Houston Texans are on the outside looking in? We do not believe that to be the case. Here are the top three reasons why he might want to go to Houston instead.

Houston Texans' allure for Sean Payton

#1 - Davis Mills is more of a prototypical Payton quarterback

Houston Texans v Indianapolis Colts
Houston Texans v Indianapolis Colts

While discussing the quarterbacks above, we have spoken about Russell Wilson and Kyler Murray. Russell Wilson is a nine-time Pro Bowler and Super Bowl champion and is regarded as one of the greatest dual-threat quarterbacks of all time. Despite his struggles with the Denver Broncos, he is still expected to be a future Hall-of-Famer.

Similarly, Kyler Murray, a former overall first pick, has made it to two Pro Bowls and looks set to the Cardinals' future for some time. However, both Wilson and Murray are known for their ability to create plays outside the pocket and rush when needed. They are not pure pocket passers.

When looking at Davis Mills instead, he seems to be more of a pocket passer. In fact, in terms of total yards this season, the Houston Texans had the second-lowest total yards at 4,820 yards. But when we consider only passing yards, it is 3,344, which is good enough to place them above teams like the Los Angeles Rams.

If you think of Drew Brees as the prototypical Sean Payton quarterback, then someone like Davis Mills might be more easily molded into the system. Despite their struggles in the last couple of seasons with a weak roster, Mills holds the record for the most passing yards by a rookie quarterback. He might shine in Payton's system.

QB Davis Mills of Stanford has some of the most intriguing tape to watch of any player in this draft. He is the off the radar developmental QB that should be on the radar. Classic pocket passer, adequate mobility, good arm strength, exceptional touch...could be an absolute steal.

#2 - Better draft position

2022 NFL Draft - Round 1
2022 NFL Draft - Round 1

Another thing that the Houston Texans have going for them is their draft picks. The Texans have the overall second pick in the 2023 draft. The only team ahead of them is the Chicago Bears, and they are not expected to select a quarterback with that. So, if Houston and Sean Payton really want a quarterback, they might get it. The Arizona Cardinals are just below the Texans, so they have a definite advantage there.

Their draft advantage becomes particularly clear when compared with the Denver Broncos. After their blockbuster trade that brought Russell Wilson to Denver from the Seattle Seahawks, they currently do not have a first-round pick in the 2023 NFL Draft.

On the other hand, due to Deshaun Watson's trade to Cleveland, the Houston Texans also have the Cleveland Browns' pick in the first round. So, if Sean Payton were to go there, he would have more flexibility in creating the team.

The final gut punch of the 2022 season for this Broncos fan is this press release the NFL just sent, reminding her that the team traded away its first round draft pick to the Seahawks for a $242 million quarterback who led the team to a 5-12 season.

#3 - Payton's Texas connection

New Orleans Saints v Seattle Seahawks
New Orleans Saints v Seattle Seahawks

Think about the first place when you think of Sean Payton; the answer will unequivocally be New Orleans and Louisiana. It is the theater of his greatest achievements in football. But ask about the second place, and a lot of people will say Texas.

In 2011, he bought a property in Westlake, Texas, while still being the coach of the New Orleans Saints. After being suspended in 2012 from the NFL due to the Saints bounty scandal, he coached his son's sixth-grade team in Texas. His ties to the southern state go far deeper than with Arizona or Colorado.

One of the reasons he decided to step away from coaching in the first place was that he wanted to spend more time with his family. Social connections are important to Payton, and by staying in Texas, he will be staying in a familiar area instead of starting all over again in a new place.

So, while the Texans are not the favorites in signing Sean Payton, they bring a lot of opportunities to the table that other teams cannot. Whether that happens or not will soon be revealed, as he is expected to be the prime star of the upcoming coaching carousel.

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Edited by R. Elahi
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