Along with being one of the NFL's top offensive minds, Sean Payton's quirkiness and sense of humor have made him a unique part of the league's fraternity of coaches. Payton's lighthearted nature was on display during the Broncos' rookie minicamp following a tough period for the team's new quarterback, Ben DiNucci.
Recently signed by the team after a Drew Sanders. While DiNucci was likely kicking himself over the interception, Payton used the moment to show off his lighter side., DiNucci's practice included a pick-six thrown to third-round rookie linebacker
"Unfortunately for Ben DiNucci, it was his first interception, and there was more to that interception if you looked at it," Payton said, via Sports Illustrated. "It was good play by Sanders and it was right in front of [team owner and CEO] Greg Penner. I was telling Greg before practice how this Ben DiNucci was doing well. I told Ben, I said, 'You know, he owns Walmart. If it doesn't work out here, I'm sure there's a greeting opportunity somewhere at one of his local stores (laughs).'"
DiNucci, as it turns out, won't have to look for another job, at least not now. Despite that pick, DiNucci was signed by the Broncos following Denver's rookie minicamp. He will now look to earn a spot on the team's 53-man roster alongside Russell Wilson and Jarrett Stidham.
It's been quite a year for DiNucci, a former Cowboys seventh-round pick who made one regular season start for Dallas back in 2020. He spent the next two years bouncing on and off the Cowboys' roster before the Sea Dragons drafted him this past November.
One of the XFL's best players, DiNucci threw for a league-high 2,671 yards with Seattle along with throwing 20 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. DiNucci, who also ran for 305 yards and three touchdowns with a 5.4 yards-per-carry average, led the Sea Dragons to a 7-3 regular season record and a berth in the XFL playoffs.
"An opportunity was all I could ask for," DiNucci said of his current situation with the Broncos, via The Athletic. "The XFL was awesome, exceeded expectations tenfold. I'm grateful for (XFL owner) The Rock, (chairwoman and co-owner) Dany Garcia and (co-owner) RedBird Capital for giving me the opportunity to show what I can do and get another opportunity to be back in a locker room like this."