Broncos do right thing, realize Sean Payton is coach team needs


Round and round, this crazy coaching carousel careened out of control for 35 days, with the Broncos chasing their tails until CEO Greg Penner finally stepped off, came to his senses and hired Sean Payton, the candidate most qualified to teach quarterback Russell Wilson how to ride again.

I will stand up and cheer this move by the Broncos, just as soon as my head stops spinning.

As Penner discovered the hard way, it’s way easier to sell 1.5 billion pounds of bananas at Walmart in a year than acquire one solid pro football coach within a month.

But once the dust settles and heads clear, while DeMeco Ryans makes his wife happy by taking a gig in Houston and Jim Harbaugh continues his endless game of footsie with NFL suitors, two things will become obvious at the end of this bumpy, often circuitous route traveled by the crazy-rich Waltons to hire a veteran coach with a Super Bowl ring to end to seven long years of misery in Broncos Country.

No. 1: It’s never too late to do the right thing.

No. 2: Payton was the best man for the job from the jump.

So what took so dang long?

I blame Broncos general manager George Paton, the knucklehead who foolishly gave Wilson a $245 million contract extension before the quarterback threw his first bad interception in a Denver uniform.

Had the price for acquiring Wilson from Seattle in a trade not been so high, with a treasure trove of future draft picks shipped to the Seahawks, hiring Payton would have been a no-brainer. Instead, the Broncos dillied and dallied, balking and dithering when New Orleans suggested it would require not one, but two first-round draft picks to free Payton from his contractual obligations to the Saints.

So the Broncos pursued Harbaugh all the way to Michigan, wooing a diva who would rather be chased than caught. Let’s all breathe a sigh of relief that Harbaugh didn’t say yes-no-maybe to Penner because those sorts of commitment issues are the last wishy-washy things needed by a Broncos franchise that has been tough to love of late.


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