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Sean Payton Rumored To Have 'High Affinity' For 2 Jobs

A closeup of New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton wearing a black visor.

NEW ORLEANS, LA - SEPTEMBER 16: Head coach Sean Payton of the New Orleans Saints on the sidelines before the start of the game against the Cleveland Browns at Mercedes-Benz Superdome on September 16, 2018 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)

Once the Denver Broncos fired head coach Nathaniel Hackett on Monday, the NFL world immediately speculated about Sean Payton taking the job.

While the former New Orleans Saints coach could return to the sidelines next season, Denver doesn't appear to be his top preference.

According to Josina Anderson of CBS Sports, Payton has a "high affinity" for the Dallas Cowboys and Los Angeles Chargers. The Arizona Cardinals are also in the mix amid rumors -- which he denied -- of Kliff Kingsbury stepping down. 

Desiring those destinations over Denver certainly makes sense.

Arguably the country's most popular sports team, the Cowboys are viable Super Bowl contenders this postseason. The Los Angeles Chargers, who can clinch a playoff berth with a win Monday night, are well-positioned to succeed behind Justin Herbert.

Earlier this season, a report surfaced that Payton "really wants" to coach Herbert. He'd also like to stay in Los Angeles, where he currently resides while working as a FOX analyst. But Brandon Staley is poised to lead the Chargers into the playoffs during his second season.

Meanwhile, Payton has seemingly gotten linked to the Cowboys since stepping down as the Saints' head coach. Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio believes owner Jerry Jones would replace Mike McCarthy with Payton if they lose their first playoff game.

These situations are far more attractive than the Broncos, who are 4-11 with Russell Wilson under contract through his age-40 season. They're last in scoring and don't have their own first-round pick next year.

Anderson also said Payton prefers a "strong link" to the team's general manager.