The struggling Saints haven’t had much success this season, but one of their biggest moments is when they blanked the Raiders 24–0 to pick up their only win in their last five games. It seems they may have gotten a big boost as NFL Network’s Peter Schrager said the team got a pep talk from former head coach Sean Payton.
“But I’ll tell you what’s interesting about [the Saints], I don’t know that it was reported at the time but I can say it now,” Schrager said. “Sean Payton popped in because he had something to do in New Orleans, and like gave them a pep talk that week, they won 24-nothing.
And then Sean Payton leaves, and it’s like, maybe the worst thing he could have done was give them a taste of the Sean Payton magic. Because they won 24-nothing once he lit a fire under their asses, he called out the defense, then he goes back to L.A. where he’s living in Manhattan Beach or wherever, they’re back to not being able to stop or score any points, you know?”
While Schrager’s report turned some heads, the story of Payton’s pep talk also caught the attention of Saints running back Alvin Kamara. He made it clear that this was not true.
Kamara tweeted, “Now @PSchrags … who gave you this Fake news?? #Misinformation.”
Schrager saw the tweet and then promptly walked back his report, saying he misinterpreted Payton’s movements when he was back in New Orleans.
“Misinterpreted this one. Payton was in town that week; didn’t address the team,” Schrager wrote on Twitter. “I’ll own this one and eat it.”
Payton left the Saints at the end of last season, which allowed defensive coordinator Dennis Allen to fill the top job in New Orleans. Everything has gone bad as the Saints currently have a 3–7 record, despite playing in a weaker NFC South.
Payton may be out of the league, but he is widely expected to make his way back to the sidelines next season.
Starting running back Alvin Kamara leads the Saints with 469 rushing yards this season. The Saints rank 15th in rushing yards this season.