As we await official word on the status of Colts head coach Chuck Pagano, it's worth paying attention to some of the reports floating around about potential targets whenever the Colts do decide to move on from Pagano. One of the names that is likely to garner a lot of attention from owner Jim Irsay is Saints head coach Sean Payton, who may be on the move this offseason.
It is expected that Irsay will want to hire a big-name, experienced head coach to replace Pagano, and Payton certainly fits the bill. Yesterday, NFL Media's Ian Rapoport reported that the Colts are expected to target Payton (along with Nick Saban) in their coaching search. Today, Rapoport notes what the price might be in order to make it happen, since Payton is currently under contract with the Saints: just a second round pick.
From what I am told, the potential price placed by the #Saints on Sean Payton is a 2nd rounder… That's what it'll take to pry him.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) January 4, 2016
According to CBS Sports' Jason La Canfora, the price might be even lower:
Would not be surprised if ultimately Sean Payton is dealt for a mid-round pick. He won't want new team to give up too much. Maybe a 4th— Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) January 4, 2016
I imagine that, if either of those reported prices are true, one of the biggest obstacles to Sean Payton winding up with the Colts would be greatly diminished. In getting Payton, the question would obviously be how much the team would need to give up in order to get him, but if it's simply a second round pick, I think that's something that Jim Irsay might be willing to do. Of course, it's not just that simple, as it would take the Colts targeting Payton and Payton agreeing on Indy, but if that works out I don't think the trade price would be that big of an obstacle if it's just a second rounder.
In nine seasons with the Saints, Payton has compiled an 87-57 record (.604) and has led New Orleans to three division titles, five playoff appearances, and a Super Bowl victory (coming against the Colts). Perhaps the most amazing thing of all from Payton's tenure with the Saints, however, is that in all nine seasons the Saints finished sixth or better in total offense, including five number one finishes. Furthermore, in seven of the nine seasons the Saints finished in the top ten in points scored, finishing first twice. Sean Payton can absolutely coach an offense, which makes the possibility of him coaching Andrew Luck an exciting one for Colts fans. His defense has been an issue in recent years in New Orleans, but if he hires a capable defensive coordinator, that shouldn't stand in the way of him winding up somewhere. If I'm the Colts, I'd absolutely be willing to give up a second round pick if it meant getting a guy like Sean Payton who could help get the most out of Andrew Luck and the offense.