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Former Saints Coach Sean Payton Comments on Whether He'd Return After 2022 Season

Sean Payton stepped down from his role as the Saints' coach on Tuesday, leaving the franchise after a 16-year tenure.

Payton told reporters in a 90-minute press conference that while he will not coach next season, that he would not rule out a possible return. 

"I still have a vision for doing things in football and, I'll be honest with ya, that might be coaching again at some point," Payton said. “I don't think it's this year, I think maybe in the future but that's not where my heart is right now. It's not at all.”

Among the possible teams previously linked to Payton have been the Cowboys. Before his tenure in New Orleans, Payton served as an assistant with the Eagles, Giants and Cowboys. 

"I felt like 10 years went by and we talked about the other team for a lot, and I get it, I understand it. But no, my plans are not to be coaching in 2022," he said. "And that's just how I feel."

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Payton reiterated in his press conference his next role might be in TV. He has reportedly garnered interest from various networks. 

Payton, 58, went 152–89 in 15 seasons coaching New Orleans. He led the Saints to the playoffs nine times, including a run to Super Bowl XLIV.

Current Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy and the entire Cowboys organization faced criticism after a 23–17 loss to the 49ers in the wild-card round. In the days following the loss, Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones, son of team owner Jerry Jones, was asked if he's confident McCarthy would remain with the team.

“Absolutely,” he said. “Very confident.”

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