I’ve always thought Sean Payton was overrated. It turns out he’s kind of a dick, too.
Let’s start with the overrated part. Payton has been blessed with a future Hall of Fame quarterback in Drew Brees since arriving in New Orleans 13 seasons ago. Since then, Brees has completed 68.5% of his passes with 440 touchdowns while averaging over 300 yards passing per game. Somehow, the Saints have managed only a single championship during that time. Hell, they haven’t even reached another Super Bowl despite the absence of a truly dominant NFC team as a roadblock. Think I’m being unfair? What if Doug Pederson stuck around Philadelphia for another decade, got that same type of quarterback play, and never even reached another Super Bowl? He would undoubtedly be crucified, yet Payton is routinely slurped as some transcendent coaching brain.
Now to the part about him being a dick. Here is 6ABC’s Jamie Apody asking Payton about the Saints not “letting their foot off the gas pedal” during his team’s 48-7 win over the Eagles back in November and how the visitors may use that as motivation in the rematch. Payton wasn’t having it:
It's always a bit uncomfortable to cover a visiting team's practice since you're not used to their building or their rules, and the players and coaches don't "know" you. So thanks to #Saints coach Sean Payton for being so "welcoming" 🙄
Guess I touched a nerve? #FlyEaglesFly pic.twitter.com/Wf6vU4fJRN
— Jamie Apody (@JamieApody) January 11, 2019
If you pay attention to film, and you watch the film, it was one of those games where you’re playing a real good offense and late in the game we scored a touchdown. But we were 30-something [sic] at that point, so, but we played well, so go ahead.
If you pay attention to the film. Love that. What a total football guy answer. You’ve gotta watch the film to know that the Saints needed to make a play with a 31-point lead in the fourth quarter when Brees connected with running back Alvin Kamara on a 37-yard touchdown. Simple X’s and O’s stuff, Jamie. Gotta know it.
When Apody tried to clarify, Payton then went all in:
We’re all playing hard in these divisional playoff games, right? Are you gonna play harder? [Sarcastically] That’s a good question.
You’re absolutely right, Sean. It was a good question. Say, here’s another one. Every team is playing hard in these divisional playoff games, right? Is your team going play harder because you dumped a Brink’s truck of money into a wheelbarrow and rolled it into the locker room earlier this week?
I guess we’re about to find out.