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Tag:Sean Payton
Posted on: October 1, 2010 1:59 pm
Edited on: October 1, 2010 2:02 pm

Hot Routes 10.01.10 (cool looking date, huh?)

Hot Routes
Posted by Andy Benoit

C. Ochocinco (US Presswire)
Chad Ochocinco is sorry for the sex-line flap (even though he has nothing to apologize for since he wasn’t at fault). This is at least the second time we’ve mentioned this story about Ocho’s cereal, and it’s probably the fifth or sixth time you’ve heard about it. This begs the question…could the mistake have been a clever publicity stunt? (Think about it: would we be talking about the cereal without the sex-line controversy?)

The Redskins couldn’t practice Thursday because it was raining. Seriously.

Football wasn’t the only thing Braylon Edwards was thinking about last Sunday.

Eagles second-year running back LeSean McCoy is getting some well-deserved props for his improvements in pass-blocking. (By the way, that was three hyphens in one sentence!)

John Madden remembering George Blanda.

Our own Will Brinson continues to sit by the window, staring off blankly as he thinks about the bum ankle of his beloved Sean Weatherspoon. The Falcons linebacker missed practice again on Thursday.

Titans running back Javon Ringer wouldn’t mind getting more action behind Chris Johnson. Jeff Fisher has hinted a few times this week that the second-year man will get a heavier load. (Ringer has 13 carries on the season.)

Normally, homemade music videos don’t make it anywhere on (except maybe the message boards). But this Redskins hip-hop video is an exception. (Notice the notice editing on the superhero bit about 30 seconds or so in.) Oh, also, my editor pointed out that, thanks to a quick few seconds of iffy content, we need to add a NSFW warning. Or, maybe it is suitable…depends on your view of animal behavior. We'll say nsfw (lowercase)."

Sean Payton thinks John Fox would be the top free agent available next year if the head coach doesn’t stay in Carolina.

Is this the most unforeseen NFC Offensive Player of the Month recipient of all-time?

Packers rookie linebacker Frank Zombo (what a name, by the way), was fined $7,500 for his hit Monday night on Jay Cutler. (Going by Shaun Smith’s fine…for just $2,500 more, Zombo could have nailed Cutler where it really counts.)

For some reason, Dwayne Jarrett thought now would be a good time to reveal that his agent approached the Panthers about trading the receiver during the offseason.

Ray Rice is a go for Sunday.

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Posted on: October 1, 2010 12:08 am

Carney grabs Hartley's job in New Orleans

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

In perhaps some of the least surprising news of the week, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports that newly-signed K John Carney will take over the place-kicking duties for the Saints.

After watching Garrett Hartley miss a 29-yard chip shot that would have won the Atlanta game in overtime – only to see the Falcons win a few minutes later – the Saints brought in the 46-year-old Carney this week to lend some stability.

New Orleans also used Carney last year when Hartley was serving a four-game suspension for testing positive for a banned stimulant. He went 13 of 17 on his field goal attempts when Hartley was out.

Through it all, Saints coach Sean Payton continues to treat Hartley with infinite patience and has kept him on the roster. Perhaps that’s because Hartley did send New Orleans to the Super Bowl with a 40-yard field in overtime to beat the Vikings.

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Posted on: September 28, 2010 9:59 am
Edited on: September 28, 2010 5:07 pm

Top Ten with a Twist: Biggest problems

Mike Singletary has led his San Francisco squad to an 0-3 start to the season (AP).
Posted by Josh Katzowitz

The first game, if your favorite team has a bad day at the office, you can forgive it. “Ah, it’s just one game,” you might say. “My men have plenty of time, and it was the first game of the season. Obviously, they haven’t worked out all the kinks.” You can still sleep at night.

The second game, if your team stinks up the joint again, you can forgive it. With reservations. “OK, it’s only two games. The season is still long. You can still make the playoffs if you start it out 0-2. They’re still figuring things out.” You still sleep at night, though probably not as soundly.

By the third game, though, if your team is still playing really, really poorly, you might have a tough time catching those Z's. By game three, problem teams – and problem players – are becoming more “the trend” and less “just a phase.” Your team might really suck, after all. Your favorite player might officially be over the hill.

You might officially have a problem.

10. Carson Palmer:
I’ve watched Palmer closely the past five or six years, and after the Jets beat Cincinnati in the playoffs last year, I wrote Palmer was no longer an elite quarterback (you can’t be elite, after all, if your stats fall somewhere between Jason Campbell and David Garrard). He’s continued his struggles this year, and though, the Bengals don’t need him quite as much if they have a healthy Cedric Benson, you can close the book on him as one of the best in the game.

9. Shawne Merriman’s Achilles/Andre Johnson’s ankle: Let’s combine two annoying injuries for players who would do well to stay on the field. Merriman, who missed much of the preseason because of a holdout/Achilles injury, played the last two weeks, but he had to leave Sunday’s contest because of a calf injury. Though he’s not the player he once was, he’s a better option for San Diego than Antwan Applewhite and Brandon Lang. And Johnson’s ankle is self-explanatory. If he’s not on the field – and he’s had to miss part of the past two games – the Texans offense isn’t nearly as potent.

8. David Garrard: I know, I hate putting two QBs on here in the first three picks, but, unlike Palmer, I’m not sure why Garrard is still playing with the first string. I mean, aside from Todd Bouman (hasn’t thrown a pass in five seasons) being his only backup. Coach Jack Del Rio was asked how much longer he could play Garrard, and Del Rio said as long as he was the team’s best option. Meaning he’s the team’s only option. Which is bad news.

7. Ben Roethlisberger’s return:
This isn’t about Roethlisberger necessarily and I assume coach Mike Tomlin will give him back his job when he returns from his four-game suspension, but the Steelers could be 4-0 playing a combination of Dennis Dixon and Charlie Batch. Roethlisberger obviously is a better QB than either of those two, but he’ll probably be rusty. What if he struggles against the Browns in his first game? What if Miami’s defense lights him up the week after that? Will Steelers fans be chanting Charlie Batch’s name (probably not, but you never know …)?

6. Brandyn Dombrowski:
So, how soon can Marcus McNeill return for San Diego? Dombrowski, playing LT and trying to protect Philip Rivers’ blindside, had a tough time against Seattle on Sunday, Chris Clemons toasted him a few times to sack Rivers, and on the Chargers’ first attempt to get within two late in the game – the first time Rivers hit TE Antonio Gates – Dombrowski was called for holding. San Diego coach Norv Turner has defended him, but Dombrowski had a rough one in the Chargers loss.

G. Hartley had a rough week for New Orleans last week and is in danger of losing his job (AP). 5. Garrett Hartley: It’s hard to believe how badly Hartley missed his game-winning 29-yard field goal in overtime of the Falcons victory against the Saints. Coach Sean Payton has shown plenty of loyalty to Hartley, but Hartley directly cost New Orleans the game Sunday. How many more games will he negatively impact the Saints before he’s off the team? Maybe, none. John Carney and Matt Stover apparently have tried out for the Saints this week, and at this point, if Hartley lasts the year in New Orleans, it’d be kind of a surprise. 

4. The entire AFC/NFC West: We’ll get into San Francisco’s Mike Singletary in a minute, but man, how inconsistent have these conferences been? Oakland has been terrible (against Tennessee), less terrible (a win against St. Louis), and almost not terrible enough to win again (a 24-23 loss to Arizona). Derek Anderson has worked his anti-magic for the Cardinals. And you still don’t know what you’re going to get when Seattle runs onto the field for the game. I'm still shocked St. Louis beat Washington. These divisions are wide open for the taking, especially when Kansas City starts 3-0 and leads the AFC West.

3. Chargers kick return coverage:
OK, so you saw what Leon Washington did against San Diego on Sunday, returning a kick for 101 yards for the TD and then returning another kick for 99 yards. That was unreal. But don’t forget about Kansas City’s Dexter McCluster, who had a 94-yard punt return in the season opener vs. San Diego. On Monday, several Chargers veterans volunteered for special teams duties in order to help improve that unit. Hey, it certainly couldn’t hurt.

2. Giants discipline:
Remember how Antrel Rolle complained about how much control the coaching staff held over the players? Well, that’s not exactly true, especially when we’re talking about New York’s 11 penalties, including five personal fouls that occurred after the play was over, in its bad loss to Tennessee. Two 15-yarders came courtesy of RT Kareem McKenzie (behavior McKenzie called “despicable” the next day), and Rolle incurred one when he tried to punch Tennessee TE Craig Stevens. With performances like that, you have to wonder what kind of control coach Tom Coughlin actually asserts over his players. And how much longer he’ll be in control of the Giants at all.

1. Mike Singletary:
After the 49ers 31-10 beatdown by the Chiefs, word filtered out that Kansas City’s defenders apparently were calling out San Francisco’s play calls before the plays were actually run. Now, the 49ers are 0-3, and maybe, aside from pulling down his pants to motivate his team, Singletary doesn’t exactly seem like an X’s and O’s guy. He actually was asked after the game if he had been outcoached, and he said, “I would not say ‘outcoached.’ When you have a loss like this, a lot of things look wrong.” Like the offense. And a day after backing his offensive coordinator Jimmy Raye and saying he’d be around the rest of the season, Singletary fired him. That means new offensive coordinator Mike Johnson continues the streak of Alex Smith never playing for the same coordinator in back-to-back seasons. I’m sure that will help.

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Posted on: September 26, 2010 5:17 pm
Edited on: September 26, 2010 5:33 pm

Hartley's flub costs Saints badly

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

After last week, when New Orleans PK Garrett Hartley hit a 37-yard FG in overtime to beat San Francisco on Monday Night Football, one had to wonder if he had exorcised his demons from the season opener.

You’ll probably recall he missed twice against Minnesota, and you might remember that he missed four games last year because of a positive test of a banned stimulant. And although his game-winning FG last week was an ugly-looking kick, you couldn’t argue with the results.

But now New Orleans might have a real problem. Despite coach Sean Payton’s loyalty to Hartley, his kicker cost the Saints the game today. He flubbed a 29-yard FG wide left in overtime, which allowed the Falcons to drive down the field the other way to get their own field goal to win the game and upset the reigning Super Bowl champs.

The question now is this: how much will Payton’s loyalty to Hartley continue to cost the Saints?

UPDATE (5:30 p.m.): Payton was asked about Hartley in the postgame. Said Payton: "We're not going to talk personnel right now."

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Posted on: September 21, 2010 1:23 am
Edited on: September 21, 2010 1:31 am

Reports: Bush to miss 6 weeks with leg injury

Posted by Will Brinson

Reggie Bush, former Heisman holder and all-purpose Saints star, left the fourth quarter of Monday's game with a leg injury after trying to recover a muffed punt.

The team has yet to release information relating to what exactly is wrong with Bush, but he was spotted by cameras leaving Candlestick Park on crutches; certainly that's not a good sign for anyone.

ESPN's Coleen Dominguez reported following the game that Bush could miss up to six weeks with a knee injury and cites a source indicating that Bush broke a bone in the injured leg, but that the injury will not require surgery.

If that's the case, it's a tremendous blow to the defending champions -- despite Bush's inability to ever become a full-fledged running back, he's one of the most versatile weapons on the team and the perfect compliment to Sean Payton's offense.

Additionally, a six week timeline for a knee injury would at least open up the possibility for Bush's injury to be more significant.

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Posted on: September 9, 2010 3:45 pm

Payton's comments about Favre add to intrigue

Posted by Andy Benoit

Larry Holder provided an excellent Saints-Vikings preview to earlier today . Holder focused primarily on the war of words between players and coaches regarding how the Saints went after Brett Favre in the NFC Championship. This was a hot issue earlier in the offseason when Darren Sharper and Visanthe Shiancoe exchanged jabs via Twitter. The issue recently gained more steam when Vikings coach Brad Childress reached into Phil Jackson’s bag of tricks and decided to publicly gripe about the officiating before the game was even played.

Now, you can add another battle to this war of words. Jeff Duncan of the New Orleans Times Picayune wrote a story Thursday, revealing what Saints head coach Sean Payton said to his players about Favre before facing Favre in the NFC Championship:

"When you get older in life, you tend to get very careful, and a little more fearful," Payton said, according to players and staffers who were there. "You start thinking about your own mortality. If it rains outside you might not go to the store, especially at night. You figure you'll just wait it out. You might have somewhere to go and you tell yourself I don't want to go there. You don't want to get in a wreck.

"If you keep hitting him (on Sunday) he'll make a mistake. If we keep putting pressure on him (Sunday night) he'll start being careful, he'll start doing anything he can to avoid getting hit and he'll make a mistake. I promise you, if we hit him for four quarters, he'll turn into that old man who's scared of the rain."

It should be noted that Favre and Payton are friends (they spoke a few days after that epic NFC Title Game).

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Posted on: August 18, 2010 2:47 pm

Carl Nicks demoted for the day

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Carl Nicks has been a fine OG for the Saints the past two years, but apparently that doesn’t mean he has the right to take first-team snaps in practice. As the New Orleans Times-Picayune points out, the Saints coaching staff was sending a message today when it demoted Nicks to the second team.

It didn’t sit well with Nicks.

"It has to be one of two reasons, (either) they feel I'm not good enough any more or they feel the guy behind me is better," Nicks said after practice. "You've got to ask coach about that.

"It doesn't light my fire ... I'm confident in my abilities. If they feel I'm not capable of running with the 1s, I've got to respect that."

Terrence Metcalf replaced Nicks on the first team, but coach Sean Payton also said not to read anything into the move.

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Posted on: July 12, 2010 9:01 am

Saints selling books

Saints head coach Sean Payton is a Super Bowl winner AND best-selling author. Payton’s book, Hometeam, debuted at No. 8 on the New York Times best-seller list for Hardcover non-fiction.

Drew Brees also has a book out (co-authored with Mark Brunell, by the way) titled Coming Back Stronger: Unleashing the Hidden Power of Adversity. It is currently No. 5 on Amazon.

Brees had three book signings in New Orleans, Saturday, which, according to the Times Picayune, attracted not just legions of readers, but roughly 1,000 tailgaters.

--Andy Benoit 

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or