When Sean Payton's one-year suspension ends, he might find the cupboard bare when he returns to his Saints office. Certainly not of players. Drew Brees will end his career in New Orleans, and most of the core Saint players are under contract for the foreseeable future. No, Payton might find that his absence led to a mass audition of his assistants to run their own shops. And there would be merit to that logic.
Joe Vitt, Aaron Kromer, Steve Spagnuolo and Pete Carmichael Jr. all could be candidates for head coaching jobs about the time Payton returns to reclaim his locker. You earn your bones when the bullets start flying, and all four aforementioned assistants will soon be dodging and ducking while rallying their own troops to take out the enemy. Bullets have never flown so frequently around the Saints organization as they have during the past offseason. Bountygate, Brees holdout, wild stories of bugging devices, the commissioner suspensions, players suing the commissioner and other lawsuits being prepared.