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Better Saints strategy: Hiring Parcells or promoting from within?

An interesting wrinkle has been uncovered in the Saints' bounty situation, as NFL Network contributor Jay Glazer is reporting that Sean Paytonis planning to meet with Bill Parcells about becoming the interim coach in New Orleans while Payton serves his year-long suspension. Is it a better strategy for the Saints to promote from within (perhaps Steve Spagnuolo or Pete Carmichael) or hire an outsider like Parcells?

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  • Steve Wyche
  • Parcells not a good sideline fit at this stage in his career

First off, I don't see Parcells returning to the sideline for a season. Watching film, learning personnel, setting practice schedules -- I can't see Parcells doing that as this point in his career.

I think New Orleans would be best served to promote from within. There is a winning culture and a certain approach to things that could be held intact.

There's also the Drew Brees factor. Brees is familiar with the offensive coaches and game plan. Parcells' coaching style might not mesh with how Brees likes to play and that could be problematic for the long term. I don't see it happening, but with the way this offseason has unfolded, it very well could.

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  • Bucky Brooks
  • Parcells as interim coach makes perfect sense for Saints

If Sean Payton successfully convinces Bill Parcells to take over as the Saints' interim coach, it would be a terrific move for the organization. Parcells would garner instant respect from the players due to his previous accomplishments as a head coach. His Super Bowl titles and proven track record of success would prompt players to listen intently to his instructions and follow his lead.

Parcells also shaped a lot of Payton's coaching philosophies as his mentor, likely resulting in the organization operating under the same premise in 2012. This would ensure continuity on many levels, including game planning and practice structure, which will allow players to maintain the routine that has been critical to their success.

Finally, Parcells' installation as the interim head coach would allow everyone on the coaching staff to remain in their customary roles. Pete Carmichael would be allowed to focus on the offense extensively without having to worry about shouldering additional responsibilities. Steve Spagnuolo would have the opportunity to build and develop his defense without having to adjust to suddenly becoming the new leader of an unfamiliar organization. Although his recent experience as a head coach would rank as beneficial in this situation, I think he would face a difficult task serving in a dual capacity in his first season.

With Parcells in place to serve as the CEO on staff, the Saints could roll into 2012 without skipping a beat.

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  • Charley Casserly
  • If Parcells says he can do it, hand him the reins

No one can deny that Bill Parcells had a great career in the NFL. I am on record as saying the Hall of Fame was wrong in not electing Parcells in February. He is one of the greatest coaches of all time.

The big advantage of having Parcells as head coach is it allows the offensive and defensive staffs to stay intact. The question is whether Parcells has the energy and desire to do it. Remember, he left the Cowboys with the idea he had no desire to coach again. Parcells also knows that by doing this, it will delay his HOF consideration for another five years.

Even though I believe Steve Spagnulo is the best choice on the staff, if Parcells says he can do it, I would do it. One last thing to consider: With this Parcells news becoming public, it has undercut the credibility of the Saints' interim coach if it is not Parcells.

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  • Gregg Rosenthal
  • Consultant role much more reasonable for Parcells

It makes no sense on a number of levels. Parcells has repeatedly said he is burnt out from coaching, and there were suggestions he didn't attack the tail end of his Dolphins VP gig with his usual passion. How could Parcells coach a team, even for only a year?

Parcells is unfamiliar with how the Saints operate. Promoting from within sends a clearer message to the players. A young, hungry coach like Pete Carmichael, Aaron Kromer or Steve Spanguolo should get the job. It makes a lot more sense for the Saints to bring in Parcells as a consultant.

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  • Jason Smith
  • Promoting from within allows semblance of normalcy

Even now, I worship at the altar of Bill Parcells. But I can't see going out to get him as a positive move for New Orleans. Why?

It's going to be a season of upheaval in New Orleans. There already is a lot of change. You want things to be as close to normal as possible, so you can give yourself a chance to win. Promoting from within gives you that. The offense is a finely tuned machine that can go without Payton for the most part and still be dangerous. Drew Brees could even be the head coach. But taking your marching orders from Pete Carmichael, who's been there awhile, is like an extension of Payton.

You want to be able to concentrate on football as much as possible, which is going to be hard when every third question will be about Bountygate. You want to add in Parcells, who brings his own drama to every press conference and coaching move? ("Fellas, look, I'm not going to get into this knucklehead stuff with you knuckleheads, but Marques Colston doesn't give us a chance to win right now.") You're adding more variables to an equation that needs less. Promote from within. It'll also foster more of the "Us against the world" mentality that will help spearhead you through the season.

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