Sean Payton is a complex, controversial figure in the NFL. Above all, Payton has proven himself a winner. He started out that way immediately, turning around the 3-13 Saints squad he inherited and making sure they marched into the playoffs in his first year as head coach -- becoming NFL Coach of the Year. He's a compelling figure: rumors float around Payton like bees on roses. Though under contract with New Orleans through 2017, a search on Payton's name today will find rampant speculation that he'll be on the Miami Dolphins sideline next season.
With a Super Bowl win, a .600 career winning percentage and a take-no-prisoners reputation, Payton is surely on the top of lots of wish lists -- not just the Dolphins. And the Saints are struggling to solve personnel riddles that may lock the team in mediocrity for the near future. Or not. Time will tell. Payton is out of the Bill Parcells school, having worked for the Big Tuna in Dallas. (We're leaving that whole suspended-for-a-year thing out of this.) Think your Sean Payton IQ is high? Take the mini-quiz.
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