Saints sign Derek Carr, Broncos trade for Sean Payton
It’s not often that you find an NFL team on both sides of a list that lists the best offseason moves, but that’s where the New Orleans Saints landed. Derek Carr in black and gold. Sean Payton in navy blue and orange. Hey look at us caught in the middle. Who would have thought?
Bleacher Report’s Kristopher Knox has compiled a list of the best offseason acquisitions from across the NFL, and the Saints are right in the middle, having landed their new quarterback and fired their old head coach. Here’s what Knox had to say about New Orleans’ role in each transaction:
The Saints’ decision to sign Carr on a four-year deal worth up to $150 million ranked fourth out of seven points on Knox’s list, making it one of the biggest upheavals for any team in the NFL this offseason might. But the Carolina Panthers’ brave rise to the 2023 draft pick could change everything:
The addition of Carr should put New Orleans right in the middle of the NFC South mix in 2023. The Saints went 7-10 last season and boasted a top-10 defense in both yards and points allowed. However, they struggled offensively, finishing 19th in yards and 22nd in scoring.
Carr should help the offense tremendously, and it’s no stretch to say that New Orleans now has the best quarterback in the division — although that could change by April, and we’ll get to that shortly.
This move also reunites Carr with head coach Dennis Allen, who was the Raiders coach when Carr was drafted by the franchise. The NFC South is here, and the Saints now have a very good chance of winning the division for the first time since 2020.
Placed just ahead of the Saints-Carr team at No. 3 on the seven-time list, Payton’s move to the Denver Broncos received high marks for the potential to revitalize Russell Wilson’s career. Denver can’t afford less:
There are many reasons to think this latest addition will pay off. Payton helped Drew Brees establish himself as a New Orleans Hall of Famer. He’s played quarterback and knows how to develop it — Jameis Winston had a career-high 102.8 passer rating in Payton’s final season with the Saints.
Payton also knows what it takes to win a Super Bowl, having done so in the 2009 season.
The Broncos need to find a way to get Wilson back into Pro Bowl shape while also becoming relevant in the loaded AFC West. Payton’s acquisition didn’t come cheap, but it could help make that happen.