With ESPN's Adam Schefter reporting that Sean Payton is now slated to become a head-coaching free agent following the season, speculation is running rampant that Payton could return to Dallas to take over the Cowboys.
Payton lives in Dallas and coached the Cowboys' quarterbacks between 2003 and 2005. And with their wretched play this season, the New Orleans Saints are reaffirming the commonly held belief that Payton is one of the best head coaches in football.
So if Jerry Jones wants to make a splash (of course he will) and try to wake up a Dallas team that looks as though it'll finish out of the playoffs for the third straight season, replacing Jason Garrett with Payton would certainly appear to be the move to make.
It makes a lot of sense because Payton also had a hand in signing Tony Romo (the two share an alma mater) and left on good terms (he got a head-coaching offer in New Orleans). The offense isn't much different from the one Payton has in place with the Saints, and the team has the talent to win immediately.
There have been conflicting reports regarding Romo's contract situation, but it does seem as though Jones wants Romo to lead the team in 2013 and beyond. If that's the case, the only monumental move left for Jones to make would be to extend an offer to Payton that he can't refuse.
Of course, it won't be easy. Jay Glazer of Fox Sports reports, via Pro Football Talk, that Payton plans on returning to the Saints, assuming the team wants him back. And sources also tell PFT that the Saints' front office is committed to Payton.
And then there's the fact that Jones loves Garrett. Things can change in a hurry, but Jerry sees something in Garrett that a lot of us don't and believes he can become a championship-winning head coach.
I know Jones isn't the league's most patient man, but let's keep in mind that this is only Garrett's first full season (in other words, no interim tag and no lockout) as an NFL head coach. Firing him this quickly would be rash, but if the 'Boys continue to plummet during the second half of the season and Payton doesn't immediately re-sign with the Saints, the possibility might just become a reality.