Is Sean Payton the next Dallas Cowboys coach? Speculation rampant, but no change imminent


The ears of Dallas Cowboys fans everywhere perked up when they heard Tuesday that coach Sean Payton is leaving the New Orleans Saints.

It was his choice to walk away after 15 seasons as Saints coach, including the franchise’s only Super Bowl title. Payton said he just needs to spend some time away from the game.

"I don't like the word retirement," Payton, 58, said Tuesday afternoon. "I still have a vision for doing things in football. And I'll be honest with you, that might be coaching again at some point. I don't think it's this year, I think maybe in the future. That's not where my heart is right now."

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Payton is a former Bill Parcells assistant with the Cowboys and is close to Jerry Jones and the Jones family. Payton also has a home in North Texas.

With Jerry refusing to publicly endorse Mike McCarthy during a radio interview days after the Cowboys’ disappointing wild card playoff loss, speculation is running rampant that Payton could become Cowboys coach at some point.

Payton is under contract with New Orleans for three more years. Any team hiring him during that time would need to compensate the Saints, likely with players and/or draft choices.

Jones has been vocal about his desire to win one more Super Bowl as he grows older. It’s been 26 years since the franchise has appeared in an NFC Championship game – only the Lions and Redskins have a longer such streak.

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