Sean Payton Says He'd Be Interested in 2023 NFL Return for 'Right Situation'

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist IVSeptember 21, 2022

ATLANTA, GA - JANUARY 09: Head coach Sean Payton of the New Orleans Saints prior to the game against the Atlanta Falcons at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on January 9, 2022 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images)
Todd Kirkland/Getty Images

Former New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton may not be away from the sidelines for long.

During a discussion with NewOrleans.Football's Nick Underhill and Mike Triplett, Payton addressed whether he will return to coaching as soon as the 2023 season, saying, "If the right situation presented itself, I would definitely be interested."

Payton stepped down from his position as the head coach of the Saints after the 2021 campaign and has been part of Fox's NFL coverage in the early portion of the 2022 season. He said during the interview that he has enjoyed what he is doing.

Still, it was surprising that the most successful head coach in New Orleans history stepped away like he did.

Payton coached the Saints from 2006 through 2021, though he was suspended for the 2012 season because of his role in the Bountygate scandal. While that complicated his legacy, he finished 152-89 with one Super Bowl title and nine playoff appearances.

He remains the Saints' all-time leader in games coached (241), wins (152), playoff games (17) and playoff wins (nine).

Given that résumé and his success with Drew Brees as one of the best coach-quarterback combinations in recent NFL history, teams looking for a head coach next season will surely be interested.

Payton has been connected to the Dallas Cowboys so many times that president and general manager Jerry Jones has even had to react to the speculation in the past.

For now, Payton is working in the media while the Saints compete under head coach Dennis Allen. New Orleans is 1-1 and will visit the Carolina Panthers in an NFC South clash Sunday.