Now that Sean Payton failed in his bid to have his season-long suspension shortened, the New Orleans Saints are in need of an interim head coach.
Back on March 22, we reported here that chatter in coaching circles centered around the possibility Bill Parcells could fill in for a nine-month term as Payton’s replacement. Since then, Parcells and the Saints have talked plenty. But there hasn’t been any action until today when Payton found out he’ll indeed be serving a full-season suspension.
But the Saints have not talked to Parcells lately.
“Absolutely none,” Parcells told Judy Battista of the New York Times when asked if he’s had conversations with the team lately.
As we spelled out originally, it makes sense to select an outsider like Parcells that Payton trusts. They have a close relationship and by bringing in an experienced and respected individual like Parcells, the Saints can have their team run without further disruptions. Asking defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo to wear an extra hat could be a mistake. He’s new to the franchise and has a defense to install. Plus, he’ll be without linebackers coach Joe Vitt for six weeks when he serves his suspension.
If New Orleans was to promote offensive coordinator Pete Carmichael, that would pull him away from his focus on the offense. Payton has been the play caller and so Carmichael will need to remain focused on that task.
Who knows what direction this is headed in but Parcells made a lot of sense then and he makes a lot of sense now. Parcells already said he’d do it if asked. Will the Saints ask him?
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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune