Payton will remain Saints coach 'as long as they'll have me'


Sean Payton has committed his future to New Orleans Saints after speculation he could leave.

After weeks of rumors that the coach would explore other options, including talk this week that he might go to Indianapolis, Payton said on Wednesday he will remain with the franchise that has employed him for the past decade.

"This is where I plan on coaching," Payton said. "I don't envision myself ever coaching for another club."

Payton, who turned 52 last week, is 87-57 in nine seasons at the Saints helm.

He had two years remaining on his contract, but reports had suggested he could be on the market, potentially for the price of a second-round draft pick. For now, though, Payton isn't going anywhere.

"I'll be here as long as they'll have me," he added.

The Saints hired Payton for his first head coaching job in January 2006, and he promptly led a team that had gone 3-13 and dealt with the devastating effects of Hurricane Katrina the year before to a 10-6 record and a trip to the NFC Championship game.

After missing out on the playoffs the next two years, the Saints won the Super Bowl after the 2009 season. That title began an unprecedented run of success for the franchise, which reached the postseason four out of five years. The exception was in 2012, when Payton was suspended by the NFL for his role in the Bountygate scandal.

While the Saints rebounded from that hiccup to go 11-5 in 2013, they are coming off back-to-back 7-9 seasons.