BRONCOS

With Sean Payton leading off next week, Broncos’ interview schedule comes into focus

Jan 12, 2023, 12:02 PM | Updated: 12:25 pm

The Broncos’ second week of their coaching search is now clearly in focus.

It will begin Tuesday when the Broncos’ search committee meets with Sean Payton. Then it will continue as George Paton and three members of the Broncos’ ownership group meet with three defensive coordinators: Raheem Morris of the Rams, DeMeco Ryans of the 49ers and Dan Quinn of the Cowboys.

KUSA-Ch. 9’s Mike Klis first reported the rundown Thursday morning.

Morris and Quinn have prior head-coaching experience. Quinn has a Super Bowl appearance as a head coach on his ledger, along with fellow candidates Payton, Jim Harbaugh and Jim Caldwell.

The Broncos could not have in-person interviews with Morris, Ryans, Quinn and Payton this week. NFL bylaws prohibit in-person interviews with candidates under contract to other teams until after Wild-Card weekend. Even though Payton left the Saints last year, they still hold his rights, putting him under the purview of that rule.

Payton’s first interview will be with Denver. Houston and Arizona also received permission to interview him. Draft compensation will be required to acquire his rights. Houston and Arizona each have top-3 picks at their disposal in this year’s draft. Houston also has the No. 12 overall pick via the Deshaun Watson trade to Cleveland.

Denver’s search committee — which includes owners Rob Walton, Carrie Walton Penner, Greg Penner and Condoleezza Rice — met virtually with Jim Harbaugh on Monday. They sat down with defensive coordinator Ejiro Evero on Tuesday. Caldwell and former Stanford head coach David Shaw followed Wednesday.

Only Evero and Ryans lack prior head-coaching experience. That is in marked contrast to the 2022 search, in which Quinn was the only candidate of 10 interviewees to previously serve as a head coach.

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