New Orleans Saints: Focus Shifts From Bountygate To Bill Parcells

By Alejandro Aviles

A few weeks ago all anyone was talking about was the New Orleans Saints and the bounty scandal. In the past week however, the focus has dramatically shifted to the possibility of legendary coach, Bill Parcells, coaching the Saints during Sean Payton’s one year suspension. The attention around Parcells coming to the Saints has received so much hype recently and it is well deserved. How great would it be for Payton’s mentor to come out of retirement and take over during his suspension? It would distract people away from the bounty scandal surrounding the Saints and if Parcells became the coach of the Saints the NFL would be buzzing and it would be one of the biggest stories of the offseason. Not only that, but it would be a good football move because Parcells is arguably one of the greatest coaches the NFL has ever seen. It would not hurt the Saints if they had a coach of his pedigree coaching them in Payton’s absence. However, whether or not Parcells will actually coach the Saints remains to be seen but it has gotten a lot of people wondering.

It is no coincidence that Payton asked Parcells to take over and I think there is more to it than Parcells being a great coach as well as Payton’s mentor. Payton could have asked offensive coordinator, Pete Carmichael or defensive coordinator, Steve Spagnuolo to coach the Saints. Besides Payton and Drew Brees there might not be anyone who knows the Saints offense better than Carmichael, but apparently he is content with just play-calling. Steve Spagnuolo has head coaching experience and would make a lot of sense to be promoted to head coach for the 2012 season. However, I think one of the reasons Payton asked Parcells was to create some headlines; give the Saints organization some positive publicity for a change. This may or may not be a publicity stunt, but if it is I would say that it is definitely working.

No one knows for sure yet if Parcells will be the Saints coach for the 2012 season. Even if he told Payton that he would coach the Saints it would still be up to general manager Mickey Loomis and owner Tom Benson to decide if the Saints would hire Parcells. Somehow I do not think either one of them would have a problem with Parcells being the interim head coach. Either way the buzz surrounding Parcells has definitely shifted the focus away from the bounty scandal. Publicity stunt or not, I would say it was a smart move on Payton’s part to ask Parcells to step in and coach the Saints.

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