Saints G.M. says Sean Payton leaving was never discussed

AP

One of the most-talked about coaching vacancies in the NFL for the last month was the one that never became vacant.

Saints General Manager Mickey Loomis said that the Saints never entertained any trade offers for coach Sean Payton and never thought about parting ways, despite widespread reports.

“Here’s what I can tell you: I never had a discussion with another team. No one called me and I never called anyone else,” Loomis said, Evan Woodbery of the New Orleans Times-Picayune.

Loomis replied “Not really”  when asked if he thought about what appropriate compensation would have been (though there were several reports that a second-round pick might have gotten it done).

The two met the day after the season, amid plenty of chatter that the nine-year marriage might be on the rocks.

“(Payton’s) first statement when he walked in the room was, ‘Hey, I want to be here. I want to be coach for the Saints.’ It never really went beyond that,” Loomis said. “Then it was just a matter of how are we going to approach this season, what are the things we need to do, and let’s get going.”

Payton has two years left on his contract, and reports have circled around Payton for some time. And while Loomis can say there was no fire, the prevalence of smoke suggests that things might not have always been cool.