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Klis: Harbaugh and Payton are at the top of the Broncos head coach search list

Broncos beat reporter Mike Klis give us what he knows about the Broncos coach search.

New Orleans Saints v Atlanta Falcons Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images

9NEWS Denver’s Mike Klis released his weekly mailbag question and answer, and this week, it was obviously filled with questions about the Denver Broncos coaching search. In his mailbag, he states that Michigan Head Coach Jim Harbaugh and retired former New Orleans Saints Head Coach Sean Payton are at the top of the Broncos head coach search list.

Klis goes on to say that he might give the edge to Jim Harbaugh because of the Stanford connections and that you will need to trade significant compensation to acquire Sean Payton from the Saints. However, as we have been told via multiple reports now, Harbaugh and Payton are 1A and 1B when it comes to their search list. Who actually is 1a and 1b depends on the report, but you really cannot go wrong with either option.

Now, as we know, neither of these two are slam dunk options because of varying reasons. The Broncos will need to convince Harbaugh to leave Michigan and will face some competition for his services as well. As for Payton, we do not know if he even wants the Broncos' job and the compensation for the trade will be steep as well.

I do like seeing the Broncos swinging high here. In the past, they have not gone after the expensive options but with the new ownership with deep pockets, they are not holding back.

Now, everything prior to this is not really breaking news and stuff we likely already know. However, Klis did drop a few nuggets here about what the Broncos would do if they somehow miss out on their top options. Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn appears to be their top fallback option, but the real noteworthy nugget here is that former Indianapolis Colts Head Coach “may not be in the mix” in their coaching search.

If the Broncos can’t land either of the two big candidates, I would put Dan Quinn next on the list. Frank Reich, after receiving strong initial consideration, may not be in the mix. Quinn also has successful head coaching experience, taking the Atlanta Falcons to a Super Bowl, and after hiring three first-time head coaches in a row, the Broncos are expected to go experience this time.

That is noteworthy because he is a name many fans hoped the Broncos would go after. However, it appears he’s destined to return to an offensive coordinator role for some team next season. We shall see if the Broncos do ultimately decide to bring Reich in for an interview.

Klis states that interviews will begin as early as next Monday and the process will continue for two to three weeks before being decided. So, let’s hunker down for another likely eventful and rumor/report-filled coaching search.