Sean Payton’s future with the Saints becomes an issue

New Orleans Saints v Atlanta Falcons
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The man who coined the phrase Sunday Splash! report is the topic of one all over again.

Saints coach Sean Payton, who went through a stretch of multiple seasons in which NFL pregame newshounds sniffed around (and reported about) the possibility of Payton leaving New Orleans, has not yet committed to remaining with the team in 2022, reports Ian Rapoport of NFL Media.

Payton has three years left on his contract.

Unnamed sources tell Rapoport it’s “unlikely” that Payton would coach another team in 2022. Instead, it would be (per Rapoport) a “mini-retirement” after an “incredibly challenging and difficult” season.

If Payton would resurface in 2023, the Saints would be entitled to compensation — the same way the Cardinals were when Bruce Arians unretired after one year and went to the Buccaneers. (The Cardinals, who weren’t exactly upset Arians retired and may have nudged him, ultimately got a sixth-round pick from the Bucs, and sent back a seventh. Payton would surely get much more than that for the Saints.)

Despite the characterization from Rapoport that it’s “unlikely” Payton would coach elsewhere in 2022, he still could. Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, for example, could decide that Mike McCarthy has taken the franchise as far as he can, and that the only way to get to the next level would be to land one of the handful of great NFL coaches.

Jones nearly got Payton a few years ago. It came far closer to happening than anyone realizes. The full story is shared in a certain book that will be released on March 15. The reason why it didn’t happen will indeed blow your mind.

I know you’re thinking, “He’s just trying to sell books.” And you’re absolutely right. But the reason will still blow your mind.

We’ll address in a separate post whether Jones would indeed try to upgrade over McCarthy, whether by acquiring Payton or someone else, and how it would work. For now, the point is that, even if Payton doesn’t end up joining the Cowboys, he could be leaving the Saints — 16 years after he arrived.

And if it’s not true, if Payton will indeed be back in 2022, look for him to not be bashful about calling out the latest waves from a Sunday Splash!, whether on Twitter or elsewhere.

25 responses to “Sean Payton’s future with the Saints becomes an issue

  1. I just don’t think Jerry and Sean are a good fit. Look at how Jerry undermined Parcells causing him to leave. I don’t think Payton would want to have to put up with Jerry and his meddling. Is there any way we can trade franchise owners?

  2. The only team in worse cap purgatory than the Packers are the Saints. If he leaves, that’s the reason why.

  3. primalnumber says:
    January 23, 2022 at 10:08 am
    The only team in worse cap purgatory than the Packers are the Saints. If he leaves, that’s the reason why.


    Both teams are in purgatory because they were afraid of rebuilding and paid their aging QBs far more than they should’ve to remain relevant for a few more years. Now that the bill is due, it’s going to be someone else’s problem.

  4. No coach who’s in a position of power and in high demand will ever take the Cowboys head coaching job until Senile Jones is gone

  5. If Payton takes a year off and comes back in 2023, he would be a good fit to replace Carroll in Seattle. That’s a change that could compell Wilson to stay.

  6. Sean and Jameis should sit down with a platter of crab legs and a bucket of beer and discuss their future together.

  7. Good coach , yes . Great coach absolutely not . He’s won a SB but has underachieved in the playoffs since . He has yet to prove his success wasn’t because of Brees . Bottom line he’s got a ways to go before he achieves great status . Winning without Brees would be a good start but it’s looking like he’s not up to the challenge .

  8. As a cowboy fan, I would consider him an upgrade over McCarthy. However, it’s fair to ask if he should have won more than one Super Bowl with Brees. He’s good, not great.

  9. If the Saints want to start to take steps away from the voodoo curse they traded their souls for for in 2009 they will move on.

  10. If the Saints mortgage the farm to get Aaron Rodgers it will only be because Sean Payton stays

  11. Some coaches if they leave the party is over, no better example than Payton. Will be interesting to see which way this goes. If you’re a saints fan this must suck. HOF QB retired one year, next year the HC who has remade the team seems to waffle on the job. All eras end eventually.

  12. Payton and Loomis work too well together. Payton working with the Jones family will spell disaster. Why would a coach go somewhere else and give up their power. Who would the Saints hire to replace him? Payton stays as long as he wants. If he truly wants to leave then sell him to the highest bidder.

  13. If the Saints have no contractual obligations with him ,he’s gone. Payton I think wanted to leave last year but stick it out for the city of New Orleans…he’ll leave this year though.

  14. Brees left Nola and took all the cap money with him. Somebody above said they should mortgage the future for AR12 but a chunk of that future is already gone with DB. The Saints won’t be relevant for a few years and Coach Payton recognizes that and wants to move to a front runner.

  15. “Yeah, winning not as easy when you don’t have a HOF QB…”

    Yes, especially with your 3rd string QB, with your All Pro WR never playing a down, and with 3 OL slots out for most of the year, plus a throw-away game from COVID. And with all that the Saints were a Rams meltdown against SF away from the playoffs.

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