Meanwhile, Saints coach said it was premature to assume any job offer was in the offering for Bill Parcells, who'll turn 71 is August and is a Pro Football Hall of Fame finalist. However, Payton and Parcells have discussed the Saints coaching vacancy while Payton is serving his season-long suspension.
Will the Saints be required to comply with the Rooney Rule in replacing Payton? Maybe.
They Saints can't say Parcells has been offered the coaching job just yet although that's what Payton has in mind.
The Saints won't be required to comply with the Rooney Rule if they stay within the organizational to find a replacement for Payton, who begins his suspension on Monday. If the Saints want to make an outside hire for 2012, they will be required to interview in person at least one minority candidate.
So no decision about hiring Parcells is imminent.
An option with Parcells would be to hire him as a consultant and assigning him to help GM Mickey Loomis with football decisions because Loomis doesn't have the classic personnel evaluation background like Parcells has.
This would allow Parcells to take the reins completely when Loomis' eight-game suspension begins to serve once the regular season begins.
Payton has an excellent coaching staff. The Saints have one of the best quarterbacks in the league in Drew Brees and with some defensive additions if they don't lose too much talent by suspensions yet to be handed down by Commissioner Roger Goodell, they can contend to reclaim a Super Bowl championship they won in the 2009 season.
Payton and Parcells played golf on Tuesday afternoon and they claim the coaching vacancy wasn't discussed.
"We played golf," Parcells told the New York Daily News' Gary Myers. "We really didn't talk about the job. They told me they would be in touch."
"There's really nothing new to date," Payton told Alex Marvez of Fox Sports. "More than anything, we just played golf. It was a great chance to visit with him and see how he's doing."
Because of the Rooney Rule, the Saints are throwing water on saying anything about hiring Parcells as their interim coach.
But it may not be much longer before Parcells and Payton have time to play golf.
According to Larry Holder for CBSsports
LB Curtis Lofton on possibly replacing LB Jonathan Vilma: “The one thing about me and Jonathan is that we don't have an ego. Talking to coach Spags (Steve Spagnuolo), he said he's going to get his best players on the field. Either I play the middle and Vilma plays the Will (weakside) or I play the Will and he plays the Mike (middle). We're putting the team first. Whatever the team wants us to do, we're all for that.”