The Sean Payton rumor mill continues to churn along, with Andrew Marchand of the New York Post reporting on Wednesday that Fox was nearing a deal with Payton to become a studio analyst.
Marchand notes that at Fox, Payton would join the company’s pre-pregame show, Fox NFL Kickoff, and contribute to its flagship pregame show, Fox NFL Sunday.
Even before Payton’s surprising resignation from the New Orleans Saints earlier this year, he’s been linked to TV jobs, with Fox standing out as a possible landing spot. Initial reports tabbed him as a possible replacement for Troy Aikman in the booth, and Amazon also popped up as a possible suitor for Payton as either a game analyst (in the aftermath of Aikman joining ESPN) or a studio analyst.
It appears that after all this, a studio analyst position will be the outcome for Payton, which is probably the best scenario. He’ll especially be eased into it with a spot on Fox NFL Kickoff, given that it isn’t the network’s primary pregame show. It’s also a lower stakes decision from Fox. If Payton bolts back to the coaching ranks in a year or two, Fox won’t have to worry about filling their top game analyst position (again) or naming a new full-time analyst to the long-running cast of Fox NFL Sunday.