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Tuesday, July 5, 2022
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Sean Payton reveals one of his biggest regrets with Saints turning out to be Patriots reward


Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

The New Orleans Saints is officially looking for a new head coach after Sean Payton stepped out of the role on Tuesday. During his farewell press conference, Payton touched on a number of moments of his 16-year tenure in New Orleans and, in addition to being asked about some of his more well-known accomplishments, he was also asked about some of his greatest regrets. While Peyton remarked that he has a lot to regret, he left the linebacker Rob Ninkovich leaving the organization was one he specifically highlighted.

“My biggest regret first, other than the Ninkovich debacle, would be the double reverse against Tampa Bay. We ran a double reverse against Tampa Bay in the four minutes the game was lost,” Payton said. “Toe, Mickey [Loomis] brought me a study on Ambien and its erratic behavior and mood swings with people. Got a lot of regrets. I mentioned one of them. I wish I would have done a better job with the media early in my career and hopefully I corrected that. But yes, they are always going to regret staff decisions. But yes, the double reverse, the Ninkovich decision. There are many. “

Ninkovich was a draft pick in the fifth round by the Saints in 2006 from Purdue when Payton first arrived in New Orleans. His first few seasons in the NFL was restless while Payton struggled to find the right place for him in his scheme. Ninkovich played just three games as a rookie, was on his way to the 2007 season, and then returned in 2008 when the Saints signed him off. Dolphins exercise group. He was later cut before the 2009 season.

It was at that point that the Patriots entered and signed Ninkovich with a one-year contract. From there, he would degenerate into one of the key pieces of Bill Belichick’s defense and help the franchise to two. Super Bowl titles. Ninkovich has played eight seasons in New England and is currently eighth on the franchise’s all – time sacking list.

That success comes down to the sadness of Payton, who has mentioned in the past that it was a poor decision to let go of the defensive end.

“There’s still regret every time I see Ninkovich queuing up and firing someone for New England,” Payton said in 2016.

While it may have been a rare miss by Payton, his tenure in New Orleans was still very successful, and he was able to bring a Super Bowl title back to the organization in 2009.





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