Sean Payton Injury: Saints Don't Need a Healthy Head Coach to Punish Colts

Brian Mazique@@UniqueMaziqueCorrespondent IIIOctober 23, 2011

TAMPA, FL - OCTOBER 16:  Coach Sean Payton of the New Orleans Saints directs play from the bench after injuring his leg in a sideline collision against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers October 16, 2011 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)
Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images

Healthy head coach or not, the Saints will defeat the miserable Colts in prime time. However, I do believe Sean Payton's injury impacted the team in Week 6, as they dropped a division game to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Though the Saints have a renowned coaching staff, the sideline certainly seemed to be in disarray with Payton hurting.

Young phenom tight end Jimmy Graham rolled into his coach's leg, breaking his fibula and tearing the ACL. Payton underwent surgery, and he will coach from the press box for the Saints' Sunday Night Football matchup with the Colts. This should only be a minor wrinkle in the team's normal process.

One big difference in this one is preparation. The Saints' coaching staff have prepared all week knowing Payton will be limited. This is a luxury they weren't given last week when the accident occurred. The only other time I can ever remember seeing a coach get that badly injured on the sideline was Joe Paterno. But that almost doesn't count since Joe Pa is about 274 years old.

The Saints are better than the Colts in every aspect of the game. It is hard to grasp that these two teams played in the Super Bowl just two years ago. It is even harder to believe that the absence of one impact player has dropped the Colts this far from respectability.

Without Peyton Manning, this matchup has lost its appeal and likely its competitiveness. 

Related

    Payton Rooting for Vikings with His Checkbook

    New Orleans Saints logo
    New Orleans Saints

    Payton Rooting for Vikings with His Checkbook

    Kyle Ratke
    via Vikings Wire

    Saints to Be Remembered for Resolve as Much as Records

    New Orleans Saints logo
    New Orleans Saints

    Saints to Be Remembered for Resolve as Much as Records

    NOLA.com
    via NOLA.com

    Underdog Hardee Became Star for Saints Special Teams

    New Orleans Saints logo
    New Orleans Saints

    Underdog Hardee Became Star for Saints Special Teams

    NOLA.com
    via NOLA.com

    Former Packers OLB Jayrone Elliott Signs with Saints

    New Orleans Saints logo
    New Orleans Saints

    Former Packers OLB Jayrone Elliott Signs with Saints

    Zach Kruse
    via Packers Wire