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Sean Payton’s return energizing the Saints

dm_120914_nfl_werder_vilma_sean_payton Getty Images

Last year was anything but normal for the Saints.

The bounty investigation dominated their offseason and suspensions to coach Sean Payton, assistant head coach Joe Vitt and General Manager Mickey Loomis robbed the team of big parts of their brain trust for big parts of the season. Everyone is back at work now with Payton’s return specifically serving as a jolt to his team this offseason. He’s upped the intensity of the team’s workouts and boosted the energy to a level that has his players feeling like things are back as they should be after a trying season.

“A lot of positive energy. Too much energy. Holy cow,” tackle Zach Strief said, via Mike Triplett of the New Orleans Times-Picayune. “Yeah, he’s revved up. And it’ll be good for us. I think those practices will kind of feed off having him there.¬†You know, it feels normal again. And that’s something that hasn’t happened a lot the last couple years. Certainly not the last 12 months.”

Strief isn’t the only player to share his enjoyment of the return to life under Payton. We’d expect to hear more along those lines once the Saints start OTAs on Monday and Payton’s return continues to fire up a team that feels like it’s capable of a lot more than they achieved last season.

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24 Responses to “Sean Payton’s return energizing the Saints”
  1. 4thquartermagic says: May 17, 2013 3:15 PM

    “This changes nothing for me.”

    -Mark Sanchez

  2. briscocountyjr says: May 17, 2013 3:22 PM

    Who is looking up at him while on their knees for this picture? ..just wondering

  3. jasons81 says: May 17, 2013 3:25 PM

    How funny would that picture be if half of the lights were out

  4. reesesteel23 says: May 17, 2013 3:25 PM

    BountyGate

  5. rickastleydancemoves says: May 17, 2013 3:35 PM

    This proves how mentally weak this team is. Instead of having the mind set of trying to blow out every team you faced to get back at Goodell, you whined and cried like b______ for the entire year. Not a Colts fan but I never heard them crying about their coach and the man could have died for cancer.

  6. melkipershero says: May 17, 2013 3:39 PM

    Hes probably passing out pain killers ;)

    On a serious note the Saints will be a force again as long as their D is even middle of the road.

  7. vikes8480 says: May 17, 2013 3:55 PM

    rickastleydancemoves says: May 17, 2013 3:35 PM

    This proves how mentally weak this team is. Instead of having the mind set of trying to blow out every team you faced to get back at Goodell, you whined and cried like b______ for the entire year. Not a Colts fan but I never heard them crying about their coach and the man could have died for cancer.
    ====================================

    Well said!

  8. tombstone7 says: May 17, 2013 3:55 PM

    @rick…..

    YOU are comparing apples to oranges. Coach Peyton was suspended w/o the privilege of communicating w/his teammates whereas the Colts’ coach could have and did communicate whenever & however he wanted or needed to. No whining, just facts!
    Keep it straight otherwise you lose credibility w/your comments.

  9. sb44champs says: May 17, 2013 4:00 PM

    rickastleydancemoves says:
    May 17, 2013 3:35 PM
    This proves how mentally weak this team is. Instead of having the mind set of trying to blow out every team you faced to get back at Goodell, you whined and cried like b______ for the entire year. Not a Colts fan but I never heard them crying about their coach and the man could have died for cancer.
    ===========================
    What a queen… stop acting like a little girl and face the facts….Saints will be formidable!! Sounds like someone is getting a little jealous and scared, lol..

  10. paulnoga says: May 17, 2013 4:03 PM

    I felt the Saints would pull together. The Saints fans and the city felt betrayed. Payton is back and the team is exploding (literally).
    However, the NFL is still on them. 30 teams would have been perfect for the Saints in the first game.
    Unfortunately, the one team that visits New Orleans at least yearly and is their major rival comes in.
    The Falcons have seen the madness in the dome. they have continually fought the crazy fans in the ridiculously loud stadium. The falcons have the best record in the NFL over the last few seasons and feel this a a Super Bowl or Bust year. The Falcons detest the fans and the city of New Orleans and they will not feel sorry for the Saints or give any quarter.
    I am not a fan of either team, however, this will be the “Game of the Year” to watch.
    This game should go down to the last minute.
    Great for all NFL fans!!!!

  11. breakingb says: May 17, 2013 4:04 PM

    Vikings still suck, just a reminder.

  12. BlackAndGoldAllDay says: May 17, 2013 4:13 PM

    Can’t wait for the Saints to take the field with Payton in charge again.

  13. johnclaytonsponytail says: May 17, 2013 4:14 PM

    Saints will def be a force this year. And the haters are aware by the comments they make. Paytons the difference.

  14. commonsensedude says: May 17, 2013 4:20 PM

    Is it just me or does Sean Payton look like Bruce Willis in Die Hard? “Now I have a reinstatement letter … Ho! Ho! Ho!”

  15. lengai says: May 17, 2013 4:26 PM

    paulnoga says:
    May 17, 2013 4:03 PM
    “Unfortunately, the one team that visits New Orleans at least yearly and is their major rival comes in.
    The Falcons have seen the madness in the dome. they have continually fought the crazy fans in the ridiculously loud stadium. The falcons have the best record in the NFL over the last few seasons and feel this a a Super Bowl or Bust year.” ___________________________________
    The Falcons have only beaten the Saints twice under Mike Smith (11-2 in last 13 games)…the Falcons actually lost a big “revenge” game to the Saints who had no head coach last year.

  16. Deb says: May 17, 2013 4:59 PM

    I would expect so! No matter what you think of Payton or the Saints, he’s one of the best motivators in the business. Kenny Chesney’s full-length video for “The Boys of Fall,” which opens with Payton speaking to a high school team, still gives me chills.

  17. thegreatgabbert says: May 17, 2013 5:28 PM

    Will this be labeled “Return From The Crypt”? “Return From The Dead”? “Return From The Tomb”? “Return From The Great Beyond”?

    The only thing missing from that picture of Payton is the portable I.V. unit. Or the autopsy scars.

  18. saintmyfault says: May 17, 2013 6:09 PM

    With or without Sean the Saints would have had a tough year with that defense and lack of running game. Maybe 9-7 instead of 7-9. This year gotta figure the d can’t be any worse (right?). Better d means better running game. Should be a special year.

  19. vfan76 says: May 17, 2013 9:58 PM

    This is only because he found a new way to cheat.

  20. 4thqtrsaint says: May 18, 2013 12:03 AM

    The Saints have always had die hard fans. Now we have die hard haters. I guess we’ve arrived. You have to be good to be hated. Nobody hates the Jaguars.

  21. saintssince8 says: May 18, 2013 8:03 AM

    4thqtrsaint you are correct. Long before Brees and the gang or even the dome patrol…other than Archie, there were names like Dave Wilson, Lindsey Scott, Bobby Scott, Johnny Poe and many more that anyone other than a diehard long suffering Saints fan would never know. I have been a Saints fan since I was 8, hence my moniker. I suffered through the 1980 season…I grew up in Slidell and now live in Missouri with a 23 year stop in Texas along the way. But I will be a Saints fan for life. You are right…no one hates the Jags…

  22. bobzilla1001 says: May 18, 2013 1:39 PM

    Contrary to popular belief, the NFL is not a quarterback-driven league. The NFL is a coach-driven league.
    While a mediocre coach might be able to win with exceptional talent, the mark of an exceptional coach is being able to win without exceptional talent.
    I saw Bill Cowher do that for years in Pittsburgh, which is what separates him from any other coach in Steelers history.
    I’m convinced the Saints are better with Payton than they were without him.

  23. alligatorsnapper says: May 20, 2013 1:07 PM

    saintsince8: How do you deal with no crawfish etouffee up there in the Show Me State? Or seafood gumbo prepared with all fresh seafood? Or seeing a Second Line march by? It must be nice in MO since you are there, but I would miss those and so many other things.

    I was there also for the 1980 season and suffering is an accurate word for it. I was a young guy at the time, but it left a life time mark.

    All Saints fans knew Payton’s return would energize the Saints. Who better to motivate them, get the slack out of some who were loafing, set some fire under others and stoke the fire in some? Payton does not tolerate less than 110% effort. Reminds me of my high school coach who oftentimes told us, “When I tell you to jump, you don’t ask how high until you are mid air!” I did not understand that at first but during the 3 a days in south Louisiana heat and humidity, I learned what he meant.

  24. thliii says: May 22, 2013 7:46 AM

    anybody remember the first game back after the hurr.
    in 06

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