Sean Payton created the ninth head coaching vacancy of the 2022 cycle when he stepped down from the New Orleans Saints on Tuesday. Below, we rank all nine openings from least to most attractive for prospective candidates.
9. Houston Texans
Despite third-round pedigree, Davis Mills outperformed fellow rookie quarterbacks like Trevor Lawrence and Zach Wilson
Third overall pick in 2022 draft
Pervasive organizational dysfunction. Head coach David Culley was fired after one season despite a 4-13 record that most considered a significant overachievement
Deshaun Watson situation looms. He remains unlikely to play for the Texans ever again
Very little talent on roster
Houston needs someone patient. The Texans do have the third overall pick in the 2022 draft, but that's about the only desirable part of this job.
The Texans have displayed massive dysfunction over the last few years with power struggles galore atop the organization. The team fired Culley after he arguably overachieved in his debut campaign, raising a red flag for his potential replacements. Like Culley, Houston's next sideline boss will have a roster short on stars and lacking even average talent on both sides of the ball.
Watson remains unlikely to play for Houston again. A potential trade involving the quarterback would fetch a big return for the Texans, but it's still unclear when his off-field situation will be resolved. Without Watson, the Texans have Mills as an option under center. He might have earned a chance to start in 2022 after outperforming most of his fellow first-year quarterbacks despite being drafted in the third round.
8. New Orleans Saints
Division rivals lack long-term quarterback options
Desirable city to live in
Top-10 defense in back-to-back seasons
Projected to be more than $75 million over 2022 salary cap
Taysom Hill and Ian Book are only quarterbacks signed for 2022