The punishments handed down in the New Orleans Saints bounty scandal included a one-year suspension for head coach Sean Payton. The discussion of his replacement has centered around mostly in-house candidates, including offensive coordinator Pete Carmichael Jr., offensive line coach Aaron Kromer and defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo.
According to a report from ESPN, another potential candidate is Bill Parcells, who has been a mentor to Payton since the two worked together with the Dallas Cowboys from 2003-05. ESPN reports the two have spoken "numerous times" about Parcells becoming the interim head coach in Payton's absence. One source tells ESPN they don't think it will happen.
"As a friend of Sean's and a football guy, I'm sure he'd consider it but they're talking about a lot of things," said one source about Parcells. "In the end, I don't think it would happen. It makes sense but it's complicated."
The report states it is unclear if Payton has discussed this with owner Tom Benson or GM Mickey Loomis.
But this possibility brings up a number of issues. Parcells was up for the Hall of Fame earlier this year -- he didn't get in -- so his five-year clock may have to be re-started if he did take the Saints job. And since Parcells would be an outside candidate, the Saints would have to adhere to the Rooney Rule and interview a minority candidate.
While this is appealing because Parcells is one of the great head coaches of our generation, I'm not sure if it would be the best solution. The Saints organization has been successful for a number of consecutive years now so, in my mind, sticking with someone already in-house and maintaining the continuity may be the best decision. Parcells is very out-spoken and controlling and it's hard to see him taking on a team that wouldn't truly be his.