If this happens -- if Bill Parcells winds up coaching the Saints next season, his close friendship with Sean Payton will be the deciding factor. (OK, along with Bill's desire to prove that, at 71, he can still win games.) Whether or not this is a good idea, Parcells assuming an interim role with the team has something to do with Payton's job security.
That's how NFL Network's Marshall Faulk sees it.
"Why Bill Parcells? I'd say this: Sean Payton knows that ... Bill might only do it for one year," Faulk told The Dan Patrick Show on Wednesday. "We know Bill's not going to want to stay. Even if (Saints owner) Tom Benson decides, 'Oh, I really like Bill Parcells,' there's no way of talking him into keeping that job."
We enter strange waters if Parcells guides New Orleans back to the Super Bowl or falls in love with the long hours all over again, but it comes down to trust between Payton and his long-time confidant.
"I believe for Sean, Parcells has always been a sounding board," Faulk said. "A real mentor to Sean. So Sean understands that Parcells -- the direction of (Payton's) team -- Parcells can keep that team on the direction which Sean has led this group because there's no doubt, each year, throughout the year of the football season and the offseason, he's talking to Parcells about different things -- 'How would you do this, Bill, how would you do that' because he really respects Bill Parcells and loves how Bill conducted his teams."
If Parcells is a cultural fit for the Saints, hiring the two-time Super Bowl winner would accomplish something else. Parcells' arrival in New Orleans would immediately shift attention away from talk of bounties and penalties, to the talk of possibilities, something in short supply for the Saints these days.