Saints coach Sean Payton said at least twice publicly during the recently-completed season that he wants to stay in New Orleans. The Saints have yet to say publicly that they want to keep him.
At this point, it’s unclear what will happen. At least one report indicated that the Colts were negotiating with Payton’s people (possibly after reaching a compensation deal with the Saints, possibly not) before the Colts decided to keep Chuck Pagano. Others believe that Payton covets the Giants job.
Within the Saints organization, few know what will happen. Some think there’s a good chance nothing happens, and that Payton returns as the head coach.
While it’s not an issue that will linger indefinitely, it needs to stay under wraps at least until the team that would be acquiring Payton satisfies the Rooney Rule. Otherwise, a report that a deal has been reached between the Saints and another team for Payton’s services would make the subsequent interview of a minority candidate necessarily a sham — which possibly would result in minority candidates declining to be interviewed.