CHARLOTTE, N.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) – “I still have a vision of doing things in football and I’ll be honest with you, that might be coaching again at some point,” Sean Payton said. “I don’t think it’s this year, I think maybe in the future but that’s not where my heart is right now.”
What a difference a year makes. After retiring from coaching one year ago, Sean Payton is back in the headlines as one of the hottest candidates of this coaching cycle.
During a coaching career that has spanned over three decades, he has established himself as one of the best offensive minds the game has ever seen.
17 years ago, he helped breathe life into a franchise and city that was in dire need of it. Five months after New Orleans was devastated by Hurricane Katrina, Payton joined forces with Drew Brees and the rest is history.
Seven NFC South titles, an NFC championship and a Super Bowl win in 2010, the first in franchise history.
Payton has proven to be an aggressive play caller throughout his career, look no further than his decision to onside kick to open the second half of that Super Bowl victory over the Colts.
With Brees leading the way, Payton helped transcend the game over the course of his 15 seasons leading the Black and Gold. Payton’s offenses ranked in the top 10 in the NFL for 13 consecutive years. In six of those seasons the Saints claimed the top spot in the league.
Even with all of the highs during Payton’s time in the Big Easy, he was at the center of one of the Saints lowest lows. He was suspended for the entire 2012 season for his involvement in the Bountygate scandal.
When it comes to his philosophy, Payton’s ability to adapt and still get results over time is why he’ll always be mentioned when coaching jobs open up. His high-flying style of offense could bring new life to the Panthers much as it did to their division rivals.