Saints blast NFL for short turnaround from SNF to TNF on road

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Saints coach Sean Payton held his tongue all week.

But after beating the Panthers on the road Thursday night (which followed beating the Packers Sunday night), Payton was finally ready to let the NFL know how he felt.

I just think it’s foolish,” Payton said, via Katherine Terrell of the New Orleans Times-Picayune. “I’ve got three guys that are hurt in there now.”

Right tackle Zach Strief left the game with a back injury. Wide receiver Kenny Stills (groin) and running back Mark Ingram (shoulder) got dinged up but returned.

The Saints didn’t send a player to the NFL Network’s post-game set either, a quiet protest.

Nobody likes Thursday games except the people who count money, and Payton gets that he has to play them sometimes. He just objected to losing an entire Sunday by playing a night game then having to travel on Wednesday.

When the Broncos did the Sunday night-Thursday double, they got to play both games at home.

“I think the challenges were obvious with regards to logistics,” Payton said. “Thursday night games are one thing, but to come out and play on a Sunday night and come back and play on a Thursday. It’s not an excuse for your players, you don’t want it to be, but I would say it’s crazy. It’s silly. It shouldn’t happen.

“When you actually go through the logistics and see what your players go through, they get out of the stadium Sunday night at midnight. And look, it’s an easy thing to fix.”

That’s why Strief said he didn’t buy the league’s contention that Thursdays had no affect on health and safety.

“At the end of the day, it’s baloney,” Strief said. “Do you think it’s fair to play a night game and then turn around and travel and play on a Thursday? Being conscious of player safety, why would you do that? . . .

“Nobody wants to hear it,” he said. “What difference does it make if you’re upset about it? It makes no difference about it. What’s the point in complaining? Control what you can control.”

The Saints did that on the field, handling the undermanned Panthers easily. But then it was time to talk.

159 responses to “Saints blast NFL for short turnaround from SNF to TNF on road

  1. I swear I have never seen a Team cry so much as the Saints…like what they say is going to change things. The only thing I agreed on in his “crying rant” was Peyton Manning got better treatment.

  2. I actually wondered the same thing as the Saints. Who scheduled them for a Sun night and Thurs?

    Thurs night games are fine. However, the NFL should modify the schedule to setup Thursday games only for teams coming off a bye week.

  3. I thought I’d love Thursday night games, cuz I love watching football. But these games aren’t competitive, only game worth watching on Thursday night was Jets/Pats. I honestly think if the NFL wants to continue these games, to switch from divisional to non conference, and have both teams have 1pm kick off times the Sunday before. I want to watch football, but I want to watch good football. Not an extension of pre-season.

  4. Why not move the game to Friday night, might hurt tv ratings but would help sports bars and fans who have to get up early on friday. Most people sleep in on Saturday.

  5. And the NFL wants an 18 game schedule? Good luck with the players’ union when u see bad scheduling like this

  6. I don’t mind TNF, But I do not want to see any players get hurt or not have enough rest. I want the best of both teams going head to head.

    Is Saturday Nite any better for the NFL? I know its closer to the regular schedule for the athletes.

    Not a Saints fan, but I see where they are coming from.

  7. Yea the NFL is greedy everybody knows that but they also play favorites and they dont care about player safety until they have their hands held to the fire. Bottom is not fair.

    Not only is TNF a set up for injury but some teams have to travel t0 MNF and turn right around and have to travel to SNF . Not as bad as TNF. What makes it bad is when they pick on the same teams without spreading out the grueling schedule.

    I agree some teams always reap scheduling rewards and some teams, like the Saints get it handed to them. I still think they got jobbed by Goodell. What Goodell has done performance wise has been a much bigger detriment to the face of the NFL than anything the Saints were punished severely for. Nope, life is not fair.

  8. Drew Brees does not need to demand an explanation in this case since it is just the league being so obviously in their greed.

  9. The mockery that is NFL management should surprise no one. Payton is right. And the NFL wants so much for the other Peyton to win. Let’s see how many offensive PI’s are called defensive PI’s for the Donks this Sunday.

  10. I agree with them. If someone has to play a Thursday game, they should be playing the 1st game on Sunday. Give them the most time possible between games, for safety and planning purposes.

    It’s not that difficult to figure this out…

    Unless you’re the NFL, apparently.

  11. Everyone can say the saints are crying about this; however all teams are thinking what Payton stated. Players health is a joke to NFL management as long as the money keeps coming in.

  12. Simple solution. The Thursday night matchup should be between teams who had a bye the previous Sunday. Since teams in the same division are usually on a bye at the same time, the NFL could have divisional games almost every Thursday. The one caveat is that there would be no Thursday game in weeks 2-4 since no team is on a bye in weeks 1-3..

    This solution would give better match ups because of the divisional aspect and more importantly, each team would have plenty of rest leading up to and after the game too. If the NFL is all for safety, then this should be looked at.

  13. Even if you’re going to keep Thursdays, it would be SO easy to make sure teams playing Thursday have a 1pm EST game the week before. All you have to do to fix it is find out who prepares the schedules in the first place. Oh wait…..DOH!!

  14. Spot on by Payton. This was ridiculous. We had to activate a practice squad guy just to run the clock out so our top RB didn’t lose a shoulder. I hope our boys can use the extended week to rest up bc the 49ers are on the way.

  15. Nobody likes Thursday games except the people who count money…

    Let’s not count the players out of the people counting the money. All of this is collectively bargained. I don’t ever recall hearing the players association say let’s all take a little less and do away with this Thursday night thing.

    These guys get paid a lot of money to play, and rightfully so. It’s impossible to build an ideal schedule for every team. Stop the whining and do your job Saints

  16. I don’t disagree with Payton’s points but it’s like spitting in the wind. The owners don’t care about player safety in this situation, they only care about how much money they can make by having Thurs games.

  17. The Cowboys have been doing this on Thanksgiving week for about 40 years. Quit crying.

  18. I understand that the NFL doesn’t play on Friday nights due to not wanting to conflict with high school football, but why not move the games to Friday after the high school season concludes? Would work better for everyone…players and fans.

  19. The Saints have a valid point here. I’m no Saint fan either… NFL care$ about the bottom line! Mark Cuban may be right at some point

  20. Totally agree with Sean Payton. Its becoming crystal clear that the NFL is run by a bunch of idiots with Lead Idiot Roger Goodell.

    Its ridiculous to make these players have a Sunday Night-Thursday Night turnaround.

    Every time I switched at a Cavs Knicks timeout to watch the game, imagine that a commercial was on. The greed of the NFL and their incompetence is quickly alienating a ton of fans.

    Frankly ive nwvwe been less interested or watched less NFL in 30 yrs.

  21. Saints aren’t crying because they won 2 games in 4 days and traveled on the road by an average of 20 points. But the league is full of crap if they want us to believe they care about player safety.

  22. whaaaaa!!.. take your fat paychecks & shut up, you have plenty of time off after the season, especially since you’ll be headed home early again

  23. Sounds like Roger himself made the schedule, poorly thought out except for how much money will be made. The NFL has clearly shown by their actions, the on the field product is not as important as making money. The fans have shown they will blindly support the NFL.

  24. You can’t convince me the NFL is truly concerned with player safety when they are pushing Thursday games. It’s simply not enough time for players to heal after the previous weeks game. For guys that are banged up, normally you can give them Mon-Wed to rest and practice Thu-Fri. With Thursday games you rest one day but still have meetings. And you get less time to practice.

    It puts players at risk, no reasonable person could argue otherwise.

  25. shocking news here, the Saints complaining about something. There are not many teams I enjoy watching lose more than these guys. Coach is a whiner and the QB is a HOF whiner.

    Are they also going to complain about the extra three days rest/preparation they now have for their next game that their opponent doesn’t have??

  26. Others have suggested this, of course, but why doesn’t the NFL just add a second bye week? Then you get a longer season, more ad revenue, but the same number of games. And with the extra bye, it should be possible to give teams playing on Thursday nights extra time off before those games. Then Thursday night games might be okay. Even more London games could work also. Just give the players extra time off, and make more money in the process. How is this not a no-brainer for the masters of greed?

  27. If Thursday games are hard on the road team, why did the Lions lose 10 straight Thanksgiving Day games all at home?

  28. Put aside personal feelings about the Saints and they are right. That is a short turn around and when you are injured every day counts and when you are tired injuries are more likely to occur. I am sure this was a scheduling mistake but that is no help to the injured.

  29. Peyton had a legitimate beef here. If you are going to make a team play on Thursday night especially being an away game then you should let them play at 1pm instead of 8pm sunday night. Come on Goodell is filling your pockets worth hurting players that much. Goodell is picking and choosing things to change but the problem is he is changing the wrong things.

  30. Oh and ask the players if the TNF are so unbearable that they are willing to give back the revenue sharing money that comes from that TV deal. Pretty sure I know the answer.

  31. You guys act like you’re actual players and it’s a hassle to watch Thursday games… Who gives a shootle? NFL ON THURSDAY? DANG RIGHT I’M WATCHING… They could play game every day of the week for all I care, but I’m a REAL FOOTBALL FAN. Not someone who pretends like more football is bad. #IDIOTS

  32. Payton is right. Glad the Saints won, but the quality of the Thursday night games is horrible. Players are tired and worn out only having a few days to rest,and it shows. The begining of this game was testament to that. The turnovers by both teams was telling.

    I like that the Saints refuse to ham it up with the NFL pundits too. Sanders and Irving especially since they seem to act as though Cam Newton is a God.

  33. Nobody dislikes the Saints much more than I do (Viking fan).

    But I agree – Thursday Night Football on the road after playing on Sunday Night Football is wrong.

    In general – TNF is wrong. I’d prefer they eliminate it.

    If they want an extra day of NFL football – put a game on Saturday night. The colleges/networks may not like it and people will have to decide whether to watch the NFL game or the college game.

    I’m also a big race fan (local dirt tracks and NASCAR). NASCAR runs many races on Saturday night – when my local dirt track runs. The NFL has games the same times as the NASCAR races.

    I have to make a decision. Big deal.

  34. Not a Saints fan or a Sean Payton fan, but I totally agree with him. This isn’t basketball or baseball…this is a full contact sport and absolutely requires some physical recovery time. Good for him for speaking up!

  35. He’s right on the money,all of this goes back to the NFL suspending Coach Payton over player safety(bountygate) which was never proven..But I agree these games 95% of the time are just vanilla not enough time to game plan..If you have to have thursday night games? Play early on Sunday or Play It coming off the Bye week…JMO

  36. Thursday game following a Sunday game might not be a good idea. However, where’s the proof this is the cause of the Saints’ injuries last night? Payton may be on to something but his assertion alone does not make it true.

  37. Too bad! These guys make the money they make to take big injury risk. So sick of the players complaints making this game soft. Oakland was terrible last year yet we got the toughest strength of schedule this year. So go ahead and cry your way home with a win because the schedule is “unfair” The NFC south is garbage anyway.

  38. Thursday night games are fine.


    Give both teams a bye the week before


    – At a minimum have both teams at home the week before and playing in the early time zone
    – Don’t play cross country Thursday night games with big travel

    Every week teams get injuries. If the Thursday night games are at least designed with some smarter scheduling it can be fair for both teams. Then teams can be smart about how they manage players and not risk injured players. They should develop their rosters so they have depth and invest more in conditioning. Plus rest players more when they have a big lead. The saints could’ve played back ups late v GB and for a lot of this games.

    The NFL and teams just need to be smarter. It only has to be once a season per team and not be stupid to make work.

  39. Okay ,so we’ll throw dozens of bs defenseless player flags, ban wearing different helmets for throwback and alternate uniforms, move kickoffs, and make touching a qb illegal in the name of safety, but go ahead play Sunday night, shake it off Monday, watch film Tuesday , travel Wednesday and play Thursday, what could be wrong with that? -“we’re the NFL, all we care about is money, and it shows”

  40. I can’t stand Payton, the Bountygate Saints, or their “Who Dat” fans, but I completely agree with what they are saying this one time.

  41. They are absolutely correct. Its stupid to have a team play Sunday night and then the following Thursday night period…much less on the road! Another example of why Goodell is awful and the league is all talk about player safety. The decline of the NFL continues.

  42. It’s a short turn around, and it should be addressed with the NFL (as should Thursday games in general). But stop crying. The Eagles played 3 games in like 13 days last year. Kelly’s response? “We’ll play wherever…we’ll go play in the parking lot.”

    I have to agree with lflib69, the Saints really are whiners. It’s in the culture at this point…and it comes from Payton and Brees. Nothing against their fans, just the players doing the whining. Go talk to your owner and get enough support for the other owners to make changes, or shut up and do your job.

  43. Sean Payton is a hypocrite. Was he worried about player safety when he and his assistant coaches were offering bounties on other NFL players?

    “Kill the head and the body will follow”

    Shut up New Orleans.

  44. You get paid millions upon millions of dollars to play a game once a week and you throw a hissy fit when you have to play two games a week? Please, man up.

  45. He should be careful, or the NFL may retaliate next year by giving them a Thursday game after they play a Monday night game.

  46. While I appreciate the complexity of NFL scheduling, I think they need a few more constraints.

    1. Thursday road team should play an early home game the prior Sunday. No travel for both games.
    2. Thursday home team should play road game the prior Sunday. Maybe even an early game. This gives both teams equal time to prepare.
    3. Road Monday Night team plays at home the Sunday after the MNF road game.
    4. London teams get byes after games in London. I think they might already do that.

    Obviously scheduling is really difficult. There is another rule that NYG and Jets can not be at the same time. I do think there is some northeast/old school bias in the scheduling. What happened to the Saints would never happen to the Pats. And it seems like the Cowboys are often playing on Thanksgiving against some team that played on the road the prior Sunday.

  47. When the Broncos did the Sunday night-Thursday double, they got to play both games at home.


    Big surprise.

  48. With the exception of Thanksgiving, of course, Thursday Night Football is a JOKE. It’s not fair to the players…the average fan has no idea how important recovery time is for them. Football is a violent game, and these guys have beat up bodies for a few days after a game. As you said in the article: TNF only matters to those who make money; there is no regard whatsoever for player health. Hey NFL: here’s an idea: create a schedule so that EVERY team playing on Thursday night has their bye week the week before. That would give the players a week and-a-half both before AND after the game. Survey the players: I’ll bet 80-90% of them would love that.

  49. Get rid of Thursday night football and replace it with Sunday Morning Football.

    9AM pregame show, 10AM game. Everyone will love waking up to football and will probably get higher ratings than TNF.

  50. The NFLPA approved this Thursday garbage. Maybe the players ought to complain to their union boss who signed off on it.

  51. I’d like to see actual data relating to injuries on Thursday night games in relation to ‘regular schedule’ games. I honestly doubt any analysis has been done (except for financial analysis..) If I were to put the bottom line above employee safety at my work, I’d be walked out immediately.

  52. As someone else said, just give the two teams that are playing the Thursday night game the bye week the week before. Then they get a week and a half to prepare for that game, and a week and a half to get ready for the next one. Seems like a better solution than trying to cram two teams together that played only 4 days earlier.

  53. So Sean Payton thinks his three guys would not have gotten hurt if they had 4 hours extra rest by playing a day game last Sunday???

  54. bestbitter says:
    Oct 31, 2014 9:57 AM
    I’d like to see actual data relating to injuries on Thursday night games in relation to ‘regular schedule’ games. I honestly doubt any analysis has been done (except for financial analysis..) If I were to put the bottom line above employee safety at my work, I’d be walked out immediately.

    Agree 100%, and it’s more than just injuries. It’s also game preparation…you only have so many hours in a day to review film, game plan, practice the game plan, etc. There is also a mental ramping up for a game…players decompress after a game, and then start ramping up during the week. That’s why TNF games tend to be sloppier overall with more penalties – there is simply not enough time between games. This isn’t brain surgery, NFL.

  55. No sympathy.

    The Raiders have had the “toughest” schedule year in and year out, and that’s while playing a 4th place schedule!

    This year: 2 of 4 first games on the east coast, early start + a home game in London.

    The Raiders fly 10K more miles than any other team…that’s ridiculous.

    The Raiders battle the refs, the league (Mara, Kraft, Rooney) and the creator of the schedule.

  56. Bengals had the same thing last year on the Halloween night game against the Dolphins. The NFL should not schedule teams that play late SNF for TNF away games.

  57. Yes, they get paid a lot of money to do what they do.
    Yes, they get to live their boyhood dreams.
    But at some point in time you have to realize that that dream can leave them in a snap.

    Thursday night games should be scheduled after a bye week for both teams, this gives them a chance to heal up a bit and the audience gets a better contest when BOTH teams are rested!

    Playing on a Sunday NIGHT game and then playing Thursday night of the same week is insane scheduling.
    If you’re trying to kill your product, then you’re doing a damn good job of it.

  58. Just to put this in perspective, the difference in rest after a 4:30 Sunday game and a 8:30 Sunday game is only four hours. It’s not like the Saints lost a full day.

  59. Give Payton credit – he stood up and said something while everyone else lines up like little tin soldiers.

    From the comments, it looks like a lot of fans agree. What’s the matter with the other coaches, did they leave all their balls on the field??????

  60. Similar thing coming up in a few weeks.

    Cowboys are playing the Giants in MetLife on Sunday night Nov 23 (barring a flex). They’ll fly home after the game, will probably get in their own beds around 5am Monday… then play Thanksgiving’s 4:30pm game. So Dallas will lose a day of prep (Monday) from the late travel, and play a Thursday afternoon game after a Sunday night.

    Dallas could’ve been given the NBC Thanksgiving night game, Chicago/Detroit should be the Fox game, and they could have picked two AFC teams for the CBS game. But if the Dallas/NYG game is not flexed out, the Cowboys would have two NBC games in 5 days, and everyone would complain about that. The right thing to do by the Cowboys would be to move Cowboys/Giants to Fox at 1… but Dallas and New York bring big Sunday night ratings, so the NFL won’t even think of doing that.

  61. danind says: Oct 31, 2014 8:20 AM

    and you know, 4 hours makes such a big difference in the grand scheme of things.

    Look at it this way, when you get off work and get home at 5 o’clock, do you retire for the night and go straight to sleep?

    These players have just completed the most physically exhausting physical activity known to modern man. How long to you think it take them to unwind after leaving the stadium after midnight?

    All Payton is saying is why not play the GB vs NO game in a one o’clock slot. Like he said, it’s easy to fix.

  62. Could you imagine if our teachers had this attitude? “Oh man, they expect me to teach consecutive days? Don’t they realize all the time and effort I have to put into each day, dealing with all the kids… I’m thinking school should just be one day a week considering the pay I get.” Big babies complaining they have to work two days in a week… and make the money they make? How about joining us in reality with the reality rates we get paid…. grow up.

  63. The ‘Aints KNEW about the schedule well before the season, they were FULLY aware of the SNF game followed by a TNF game yet they were silent.

    The NFL does what the NFL has to do. Payton needs to shutup and do what he is told.

  64. Sean is right. Some days these guys feel like they got hit by a car on Sunday and have to recover with 4 days less time basically. The game planning aspect is a little bit less of an issue, but still an issue too. Factor in that one of the teams has to travel as well.

    There’s a good reason why these teams put an inferior product on the field. The game planning and execution is not at a premium.

    The nfl scheduled the Seahawks either last year or the year before where they had to travel some kind of crazy mileage for like 5 weeks in a row. Traveling is a problem for a quality product too. There’s the Cowboys and lions on thanksgiving.

    I’m sure the nfl could fix lots of the issues if they really wanted to. Maybe the nfl and nflpa could agree to 2 bye weeks to help fix the issues.

    Someone is getting the short straw regularly.

  65. We didn’t hear any complaints from the Denver Broncos who played Sunday Night against San Fran, only to play on TNF against San Diego. Their two games were MUCH harder. Just shut up and play. Now you get 10 days off before your game against San Francisco.

  66. roadtrip3500, on a short week, Monday is film study only. The Cowboys will not lose a day of film study just because they get back late from the Sunday night game.

  67. Oh boo hoo. Chargers had to play Raiders and Chiefs both coming off byes (never easy when it’s division), then travel to Denver on a short week with all the injuries they have.

  68. If you don’t want too play on Sunday and Thursday lose games this year and next year you won’t have to play on Thursday…Peyton man up

  69. I Love football, but i watched Florida State vs Louisville last night instead of NFL thursday night football. The NFL on thursdays is a bit of a stretch and the quality of product on the field is 50% at best. If your going to play on thursday nights at least have the teams playing coming off bye weeks instead of playing that sunday night.

  70. He’s right you know. There really is no excuse for something like this to happen. It really makes you question the wisdom of these supposedly smart schedule makers.

  71. It is easy to blame the league but like a few mentioned the players approved this too. You know why. The CBA targets revenue not profit. So what does that mean, the more revenue that is generated the more money EVERYONE gets, not just the owners. So quit blaming only one side. You don’t want Thursday games? Take a pay cut EVERYONE!

  72. blakeden, actually, every team gets exactly one short-week Thursday game these days. Even the Jags and Raiders. There are 16 short-week Thursday games that include all 32 teams.

    (There are a couple additional Thursday games that are not short weeks. I didn’t count those.)

  73. There are some very simple steps to permanently rectifying this issue:

    1. Get rid of preseason. Gone.
    2. Extend NFL active rosters to….75? 85? More player rotation = less injury
    3. Make the season longer. 18 games and TWO bye weeks. All Thursday games are after a bye. All of them. Who doesnt want more football, especially in either September or January?

    Everyone wins. Fans get more games. Players get more rest. NFL gets more revenue.

  74. texansfan82, you can’t give every Thursday team a bye the week before, because then you would have byes in week 1 and week 15. Those teams would rightly complain about that too.

  75. …and now they’ll get a week and a half to prepare for the Niner Game, which is always played in New Orleans, and lately decided by the referees who allow Kapernick to get tackled by the neck, but disallow any contact whatsoever to Drew Brees. Sniffle sniffle. Poor saints, who were given their playoff spot last year, while SF’s #1 seed was stripped away.

  76. renbutler says: Oct 31, 2014 11:13 AM

    roadtrip3500, on a short week, Monday is film study only. The Cowboys will not lose a day of film study just because they get back late from the Sunday night game.
    My point is, they won’t have a full Monday as if they had been home for Sunday or had played a road 1pm Eastern game and reported for work first thing Monday morning. And unlike a Thursday night game, they don’t have as much meeting or walk-through time on Thursday. Dallas will net the same amount of prep time as Payton is arguing… not enough.

  77. roadtrip3500, Mondays aren’t full days anyway. There’s no difference between studying film Monday afternoon or Monday morning. They won’t lose any prep time compared to any other team playing on Thursday.

  78. So many haters. Lol all we gotta do is win the division and the rest will fall into place. Get ready for the saints to ground and pound their way to the Super Bowl. L8er nubs

  79. Nobody whines like the Saints, but they are spot on. Thursday night football is stupid. The games suck because of the prep time, and it isn’t safe. Players need time to recover. Fact. It is a violent game. And we have already seen instances where a dinged up player couldn’t play in a Thursday game that they woud have played in if it were Sunday (Bridgewater). Since NFL playoff berths often boil down to a single win or loss, this is proof that Thursday games can actually cost a team a playoff sport, if a franchise QB or other star player can’t play due to a minor injury that would resolve by Sunday.

    If the NFL continues to choose cash over quality, soon it will see its fortunes reverse and miss out on both.

  80. Yes Peyton! It’s not just the players and coaches either, most fans have a 10pm bedtime on weekdays and can’t be eating salsa beyond kickoff and expect to be up for work the next day.

  81. This is Goodell’s payback for being losing the bountygate battle and being publicly humiliated. And the Saints now play SF, Cincinnati, Baltimore, Pittsburgh, and Carolina (maybe healthier by then) in succession. No friggin way do the Cowboys or some other favored team like Pittsburgh or the Giants get this kind of schedule.

    The NFL plays favorites with schedules. It always has. A few years ago Philly had to go on the road in December three successive weeks in Washington, NY Giants, and Dallas in a ridiculous piece of scheduling. Philly won all three but that was pure BS. Or how about the fact that virtually all Seahawk prime time games are on the road?

  82. No horse in this race, but I thought it was kinda crappy by the schedule makers in NYC.

  83. campcouch says:
    Oct 31, 2014 7:25 AM
    Wish I had a well paying job that I only had to do once a week…maybe twice for three hours.


    Yeah, if you actually think that its just THREE HOURS A WEEK…..stick to your day job, buddy!!

  84. Payton is right. The NFL or rather money hungry “we’re all about player safety” hypocrites are wrong. Just glad the Saints won. Too bad we had three players hurt for this.

  85. I’m a huge football fan but even I don’t like Thursday night football. I have a life and loads of work to do on top of that…I can’t afford to spend 4 hours watching football 3 or 4 nights a week.

    And I totally agree that 4 days is already a short week for players and playing a night game on the Sunday prior is even more ridiculii…as in ridiculous on multiple levels.

  86. It’s idiotic–and completely avoidable–to schedule a Thursday night game for a team that had to play on Sunday night. What’s next: a Thursday night game following a Monday night game? Come on, NFL, your schedule makers can surely do better than this. It’s not rocket science. Try scheduling teams coming off their bye week to play in the Thursday night game. It would make more sense and possibly help avoid some injuries.

  87. What is Payton and everyone else on the team getting paid to play a game, again? Really: shut up and do your jobs. Millionaires getting paid to do something that does nothing, at the end of the day, for society don’t get to whine like this.

  88. The Saints dominated Green Bay on Sunday night and then dominated Carolina on Thursday. They aren’t whining because they lost.

    Payton is making the point that if safety is a huge issue, why would a team (any team) have a schedule that crammed the games as close together as possible when players need recovery time.

    How about we go ahead and have a teams play in London and then on Thursday since it doesn’t matter and the Saints are just big babies?

  89. It’s funny to see all the commenters saying the Saints are whiners because if it was their team that had the same scheduling problem they would be saying the exact same thing. Classic shoe on the other foot scenario. Those people complaining about SP bringing up the issue are the true crybabies. I have a solution for all you complaining about the Saints. Next time you see a Saints article just save yourself the time and don’t click the link. That way everyone else doesn’t have to hear you be a crybaby.

  90. Ive been a believer the NFL scheduling is designed to cater to certain teams on a season by season basis, people will keep bringing up that everyone in the division has the same schedule but 2 opponents.

    Yeah, same opponents, but one goes on the road vs tough opponent, the other team in the division gets them home.

    Even I have seen this, thats how Seattle won it all last year outside of paying Peyton Manning off, lets be serious, that Broncos team that lost what was it? 43-8 or something? could of been over matched, but not 35 pts over matched. Not bad enough where that game ended the way it did without someone paying someone off.

    I am actually wondering if they aint trying to get Detroit to go somewhere now, obviously the officiating has gifted them plenty this season.

  91. You are absolutely right – the NFL has no business staging games on Sunday Night. The TV channel responsible for airing such consistently putrid programming – how many competitive games this year, 2? – should be ashamed of it. Let us watch The Walking Dead in peace.

  92. hairpie2 says:
    Oct 31, 2014 10:34 AM

    No one thought it was ironic that Payton was concerned about injuries?

    I find it ironic that a despotic commissioner suspended Payton (to this day, still without any legitimate proof to support his allegations) in the name of “player safety”…yet, players are subjected to scheduling like this and the possibility of 2 more games in the future.

  93. bigbluetroof says:
    Oct 31, 2014 8:32 AM

    You guys act like you’re actual players and it’s a hassle to watch Thursday games… Who gives a shootle? NFL ON THURSDAY? DANG RIGHT I’M WATCHING… They could play game every day of the week for all I care, but I’m a REAL FOOTBALL FAN. Not someone who pretends like more football is bad. #IDIOTS
    I’m guessing you want an 18 game regular season, a 14 team playoff, and each round of the playoffs to be a best-of-7 series.

  94. Has a point. Others have complained too. I never watch Thursday night unless the Vikes are playing.

    I bet every single coach and player is against it.

    It will probably take one of the golden boys getting hurt on Thursday night for the NFL to even consider looking at it.

  95. aints organization is a classless. They got all the calls against the packers and they are now whining about the schedule. Losers.

    13 World championships >>>1 katrina super bowl.

  96. firerogergoodellnow says: Oct 31, 2014 9:11 AM

    And zero Superbowls & 1 playoff win since Bountygate.


    2 playoff wins. Shows you can’t count.


    13championshipspft says: Nov 1, 2014 1:20 AM

    aints organization is a classless. They got all the calls against the packers and they are now whining about the schedule. Losers.

    13 World championships >>>1 katrina super bowl.


    Awe, someone’s just upset they got throttled in prime-time in front of the entire nation. Meanwhile have you guys found Clay Matthews yet? I’m getting tired of seeing him on my milk cartons.


    As for all the people saying Payton and the Saints should “shut up and take the win”, you’re all the same people that would would be saying “they’re just making excuses” had the Saints lost Thursday.

  97. Saints should be happy the NFL gave them their 1 Superbowl win to help the city recover (along with a gazillion dollars of tax money) . I honestly believe you could have built 2 cities for the money wasted on NO and their dirty politicians.

  98. @crewchief: sounds like someone is a little jealous lol… Saints were the best team all season long in ’09….sorry try again

  99. I can’t tell you how much I hate admitting the evil Saints being right about anything, but they are absolutely right about this one.

    “Nobody likes Thursday games except the people who count money…”

    That’s it right there. The NFL is so consumed with turning over every rock on Earth in search of one more penny, they don’t really care about anything – or anyone – else.

    Get rid of these stupid Thursday games. And start the SNF/MNF games at 7:00 Eastern. If people in the Pacific Time Zone are offended by this, tell them to get a DVR like everybody else.

  100. If your limited mental faculties can’t get past hating the Saints, that’s fine…

    But don’t hate the message…

  101. To all the people saying TNF games should follow bye week, have you tried to work out a schedule like that? Did you consider stadiums have other obligations other than football? I get it, it’s a good idea but it isn’t practical, these stadiums aren’t football only venues.

  102. That’s an issue for the players association to take up with the league.

    Should be in the collective bargaining agreement.

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