The Denver Broncos’ trade for Russell Wilson last season looks horrendous in hindsight, but that hasn’t stopped them from handing out assets in another shortsighted deal this offseason.
The Broncos reportedly will hire Sean Payton to become the franchise’s next head coach, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, luring the 59-year-old out of a short-lived retirement. Given his rights are still owned by the New Orleans Saints, Denver will send some hefty compensation in return for the Super Bowl winner.
Denver will send a first-round pick in 2023 and next year’s second-round pick for Payton and the Saints’ 2024 third-round pick, according to Schefter. The cost was something Payton knew after meeting with New Orleans brass.
In combining the compensation given up for both Wilson and Payton, the Broncos will end up trading three first-round picks and three second-round picks over the course of three seasons. The first for Payton has now been traded three times, originally going from San Francisco to Miami for Trey Lance, then Miami to Denver for Bradley Chubb and finally from Denver to New Orleans for Payton.
The story was given some extra juice, as Ian Rapoport of NFL Media reported the Broncos spent the day trying to hire DeMeco Ryans as head coach before he committed to the Houston Texans.
Now, Denver will focus their efforts on resurrecting the career of Wilson underneath the tutelage of Payton.