Romo: Cowboys already have great coach
DEC 19, 2012 9:09p ET
Payton, who is serving a one year suspension for his involvement in the New Orleans Saints' bounty scandal, worked with Romo as an assistant coach with the Cowboys before becoming Saints head coach in 2006.
Payton was the Cowboys' quarterback coach in 2003 and 2004 before becoming passing game coordinator in 2005. The current North Texas resident was also assistant head coach all three years.
With Payton being able to sign with any team at the end of the season, there has been speculation that he could replace Cowboys coach Jason Garrett. But that speculation has dwindled as the Cowboys have won five of their past six.
"Sean's a great coach; he's a great guy," Romo said during a conference call with New Orleans reporters. "I'm sure as any coach would be leaving the game for a year (or) what you do for — I don't know how long — the last 20-30 years or whatever he's been doing it. I think it's probably difficult. But when you look back when you're probably 60 years old, 65 or whatever and you look back, it's probably a good thing for a season sometimes just to get a little break and let you reassess what you really love and what made you passionate about the game in the first place.
"It can be a benefit in the long run but it probably doesn't feel great short term."
There's a good chance Payton will return to coaching the Saints next season, and that seems just fine with Romo.
"We have a great football coach, and we're excited about playing this game this weekend," Romo said.
The Cowboys (8-6) host the Saints (6-8) on Sunday.