With just a week left in the 2016-17 NFL season, the list of possible names for the Los Angeles Rams head coaching vacancy continues to grow. While it seems the team’s brass will shoot for either a big-name coach or an up-and-coming coordinator, there are reports of two notable NFC South head coaches to add to that list as well.
According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton is monitoring the situation with ‘sincere interest’ and it would not take much compensation to acquire him:
“With the Los Angeles Rams job open, multiple sources say it is a position Payton is monitoring with sincere interest,” Rapoport said. “For Payton to become the team’s new head coach, it would take significant maneuvering behind the scenes to work. One source described the prospects as not imminent or likely but “possible.” The Rams, of course, would have to decide he’s their overwhelming No. 1.
Meanwhile, the news of Carolina Panthers head coach Ron Rivera comes as a bit of a stretch. Rivera signed a lucrative extension following last year’s Super Bowl run and also has the services of one of the NFL’s most dynamic players in Cam Newton. However, Rapoport suggests Rivera’s ethnic background and roots to Southern California would make him an easy fit in Los Angeles:
Name to watch for the #Rams HC opening: #Panthers coach Ron Rivera. With a large Hispanic population in LA & a young team, it would fit.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) December 24, 2016
Although the scenario certainly makes sense, the possibility of the Panthers releasing Rivera after just one down season seems highly unlikely.
While it is nice to see the endless possibilities of directions the Rams can choose to go in, eventually they will have to trim the list down and start making their pitches.