The Denver Broncos took a significant step towards cleaning up the mess that was the 2022 season by hiring Sean Payton as their new head coach.
There has been speculation that Payton wasn’t their first choice, but NFL insider Adam Schefter reported otherwise.
Timing of today’s two hires was completely coincidental. Broncos were zeroed in on Sean Payton, and didn’t make any contact this week with DeMeco Ryans or his agent. Denver was focused on Payton, and Houston on Ryans.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) January 31, 2023
Nearly a year ago, Denver traded for future Hall of Fame quarterback Russell Wilson, and many fans and observers thought it would be playing for a spot in the Super Bowl this season.
But that was not even remotely close to how things turned out.
The Broncos fielded a certifiably horrible offense, and combined with plenty of miscues, it resulted in a 5-12 finish.
One big culprit was Wilson, who looked like a faint shadow compared to the play he was during his first 10 seasons, all of which were spent with the Seattle Seahawks.
For the Broncos to have even a glimmer of a chance of winning a world championship next season, Wilson will have to at least come close to returning to his previous level of production.
But if he does, he will at least have a coach who knows how to maximize a very good signal-caller.
As the New Orleans Saints head coach for many years, Payton had Drew Brees by his side, and together, they made the Saints one of the NFL’s top offensive teams.
It culminated in a victory in Super Bowl XLIV over Payton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts.
The Broncos haven’t made the playoffs since 2015 when Manning won them a Vince Lombardi Trophy in his final season.NEXT: NFL World Reacts To The Sean Payton Hire