Sean Payton admits that “intermediaries talked” about the possibility of him coaching in Miami

Miami Dolphins v New Orleans Saints
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Former Saints coach Sean Payton spoke to reporters on Tuesday at the Zurich Classic celebrity shootout. As he did, a few interesting things shot out of his mouth regarding the persistent rumors and reports linking him and Tom Brady to the Dolphins, a Miami plan that (as PFT reported on February 28) was scrapped when former Dolphins coach Brian Flores filed a landmark lawsuit on February 1 — the same day Brady announced his retirement.

Pay careful attention to what Payton said, and to what he didn’t say.

“I have no clue about the Tampa Bay, Miami Dolphin, Tom Brady rumor,” Payton said. “My understanding is that there a request was put in or that intermediaries talked. I’m like the rest of you. I heard that story.”

In late January, Payton told Dan Patrick that two teams had reached out to Payton through back channels.

That’s how plans like these initially unfold. Through back channels, through intermediaries. In this case, the conversation culminated in the Dolphins calling the Saints; Dolphins G.M. Chris Grier has admitted it. Likewise, the Dolphins privately acknowledge that they considered making Tom Brady a minority owner. As PFT has reported, that was one of the steps toward Brady becoming not just an owner but a player.

With the Brady-Payton plan scrapped by the Flores lawsuit, what’s Payton going to do now, publicly admit it? Hell no. He’s officially saying what he has to say, but he’s dropping enough bread crumbs to confirm the beliefs of those who know better. Who know the truth. Who have heard the truth directly from the most impeccable of sources.

“If I would have been ready to coach like this year, I would have stayed in New Orleans,” Payton said. “And so it’s nice to have someone interested and, yeah, that’s about it. Look, our focus on Tom Brady has been beating him, not joining him.”

That’s what Payton has to say, because it didn’t happen. But the Dolphins definitely tried. And Payton, even if he didn’t get a phone call directly from Dolphins owner Stephen Ross, definitely knew what was going on.

19 responses to “Sean Payton admits that “intermediaries talked” about the possibility of him coaching in Miami

  1. This isn’t getting the press it deserves. They had their all white front office and coach selected in secret with Brady and Peyton. Fired the most successful coach they’ve had since Shula and it all got blown up because Flores called BS on the whole operation! He was right. The Rooney Rule was certainly not taken seriously here and it didn’t matter how successful he was there or would be.

  2. So you’re saying the Dolphins thought getting Payton and Brady might be a good idea. Seems like a not-horrible idea. And they got creative about potential packages to reel them in. Seems reasonable. And then Flores threw some excrement in the fan (and perhaps rightfully so) and everyone said ‘nothing to see here, please disperse…’. Struggling to find the scandal here. Full disclosure: as a Pats fan, I’d love to see Ross stick around, but…

  3. And we still don’t know who leaked the Gruden emails and why. Seems a much more interesting story than the Payton, Brady thing that didn’t happen.

  4. It got blown up when the Saints refused to trade his rights to the Fins, not when the lawsuit was filed.

  5. Just like Kaepernick, the NFL gonna need to pay Brian Flores to make this all go away.

  6. Instead of being mealy-mouthed about it, why don’t they just say “I don’t have any comment or response to those questions.”
    But they never say that. It’s always some kind of BS.

  7. sbc2556 says:

    Fired the most successful coach they’ve had since Shula and it all got blown up because Flores called BS on the whole operation! He was right. The Rooney Rule was certainly not taken seriously here and it didn’t matter how successful he was there or would be.
    ——————————-
    This comment makes no sense at all. First of all both Jimmy Johnson and Dave Wannstedt had better W-L records than Flores. Second, the Rooney rule has no relevance since Miami was the ONLY team in the league to have both a black GM and HC.

  8. “the Dolphins privately acknowledge that they considered making Tom Brady a minority owner. As PFT has reported, that was one of the steps toward Brady becoming not just an owner but a player.”

    Can you explain how becoming a minority owner is a step toward becoming a player? It’s against the rules for owners to be players.

  9. No way in hell the dolphins could afford the price to have Payton coach the fish this year.

  10. Well. Someone is leaking in the Tampa circles so Brady doesn’t leave. But if I’m Brady’s team. I’m trying to find a way out. TB and TB are not seeing eye to eye.

  11. Bravo to PFT for refusing to let go of this story. They had a very cozy deal setup and I’m sure they hoped no one would ever know about it.

  12. The NFL will never sort these shady deals out. There needs to be external oversight/regulation with transparent investigations.

    There appears to be too much bias/conflict of interest in how the NFL currently regulates itself. I doubt anything will ever come of this and expect it to be swept under the rug.

  13. Let’s be honest. Payton knew the Saints were in a long rebuild and didn’t want to be part of it. So he takes a year off and then markets himself to the highest bidder. It’s a bit sleazy and cowardly, but not illegal. He’ll end up working for one of the sketchy owners for a huge salary. Then he’ll say how it just magically happened and he didn’t orchestrate the entire thing from the start.

  14. Once again – it seems the question that no one knows the answer to is is – how does the Rooney Rule deal with a coach trade situation.

  15. sbc2556 says:
    April 19, 2022 at 8:37 pm
    This isn’t getting the press it deserves. They had their all white front office and coach selected in secret with Brady and Peyton. Fired the most successful coach they’ve had since Shula and it all got blown up because Flores called BS on the whole operation! He was right. The Rooney Rule was certainly not taken seriously here and it didn’t matter how successful he was there or would be.
    _____________________________________________________________________________________
    You are certainly entitled to your opinion, but let’s not forget Flores was hired by Miami, their GM, Asst GM, and Senior Personnel Director are all minorities, as was their HC, so not sure who you are referring to with your comment “…all white front office”. To call Flores the most successful coach they’ve had since Shula is certainly a stretch. Flores hired 3 OC’s in 3 years, 4 offensive line coaches in 3 years, and put together arguably the poorest offensive coaching staff in the league. He hired Co-OC’s coming off a 10-6 season that resulted in a 1-7 start which ultimately led to Miami missing the playoffs. Flores got all the credit for the season finish and rightfully so, but if that is the case, he needs to be held accountable for the season start and never fixing the offense. Flores finished with a record of 24-25. Gase got fired after going 23-25. Same mediocre team after both tenures, and both got fired! At least Gase made the playoffs! Not condoning the pursuit of Brady or Payton, nor the Rooney Rule sham throughout the NFL but Flores was NOT successful, and Miami has an entire front office led by successful qualified minority hires in Grier, Allen, and McKenzie, and they had every right to look for a new HC!

  16. redlikethepig says:
    April 20, 2022 at 4:28 am
    Let’s be honest. Payton knew the Saints were in a long rebuild and didn’t want to be part of it. So he takes a year off and then markets himself to the highest bidder. It’s a bit sleazy and cowardly, but not illegal. He’ll end up working for one of the sketchy owners for a huge salary. Then he’ll say how it just magically happened and he didn’t orchestrate the entire thing from the start.

    1012Rate This

    —————————————————————————————-

    I’m always a bit floored by the narrative that he “quit” on the Saints.

    He came here during a time when nobody wanted to be here and brought a culture of success we’ve never experienced including a Super Bowl title. He was the winningest coach in franchise history by a mile (161-97 including playoffs), with a 63% win percentage and a plus .500 record in playoff games. I can’t think of a coach with those credentials in 15 years with one team that is not in the HOF.

    He was suspended for a witch-hunt and came back and brought us to the playoffs immediately. He rebuilt the team after a few years of struggle and made us one of the winningest teams in football between 2017-2021.

    He was robbed of another title in 2018 (the egregious PI no-call with 2 minutes to go in the NFC Championship) and suffered as one of the most targeted coaches (penalties) in the league that definitely affected his ability to get to another Super Bowl.

    In his last year he coached a decimated team to a winning record (9 wins with 4 QBs )and relocated his team due to a hurricane the same year. His team blew out the NFC 1 seed and defeated the defending SB champions twice, shutting them out once – at their place.

    All the while he never phoned it in. He gave his heart and his passion to New Orleans and brought unprecedented success to one of the smallest markets in professional sports.

    What else does he owe the Saints?

    What else does he owe New Orleans?

    He’s not our coach anymore. He’s moved on to something else.

    He didn’t quit on us. He gave more than anyone else ever has. He worked 16 hour days for 15 years. The man has more than earned the right to do whatever he wants. Period.

  17. ““the Dolphins privately acknowledge that they considered making Tom Brady a minority owner. As PFT has reported, that was one of the steps toward Brady becoming not just an owner but a player.”

    Can you explain how becoming a minority owner is a step toward becoming a player? It’s against the rules for owners to be players.”
    ___________

    The rules also prohibit teams making future offers (like ownership or front office jobs after retirement) to active players AND the Bucs had his rights. Dolphins could have talked to Brady’s people about whether he even wanted to play for them but that would have just been the preamble to negotiating a trade/release with the Bucs. It’s nuts these rumors keep getting reported because literally nothing about them is even possible under NFL rules.

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