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Sean Payton  

Former Head Coach of the New Orleans Saints

Sean Payton is a former American football coach and quarterback. He served as the head coach of the New Orleans Saints of the National Football League (NFL) from 2006 to 2021, leading the franchise to its very first Super Bowl victory during the 2009 season. Payton was a quarterback at Naperville Central High School and Eastern Illinois University and played professionally in 1987 with Chicago Bears and 1988 overseas in Britain for the Leicester Panthers.

He began his coaching career as offensive assistant for San Diego State University and had several assistant coaching positions on college and NFL teams before being named as the tenth full-time coach in Saints history in 2006. Payton has always been known for his offensive prowess, having scored more points (2,804) and gained more yards (40,158) than any other team in a coach's first 100 games in NFL history. Payton had the second-longest NFL single-team tenure among active head coaches, behind New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick, who has coached the Patriots since the 2000 season.

Under Payton's leadership, the Saints made the 2006 NFL playoffs after a 3–13 season in 2005 and advanced to their first NFC Championship appearance in franchise history. Because of this effort, Payton won the AP NFL Coach of the Year Award. Following the 2009 season, the Saints won their first Super Bowl championship in franchise history. In 16 seasons with the Saints as head coach, Payton has helped guide the team to three NFC Championship games (2006, 2009, and 2018), an appearance in Super Bowl XLIV, and nine total playoff berths with seven division titles, making him the most successful coach in Saints franchise history.

Payton has written a New York Times best seller, titled “Home Team: Coaching the Saints and New Orleans Back to Life”. Going in to the 2014 season, Payton was ranked as the no. 2 coach in the league, behind only Bill Belichick. Sports speaker Sean also has a charity of his own titled Payton’s Play it Forward Foundation with it’s mission being to improve the lives of families and children in the areas of health, education and social welfare.


Saints' Coach Sean Payton Who Fought NFL Rules Steps Down - New York Times
Sean Payton was the most successful coach in the New Orleans Saints’ franchise history, but he drew rebuke from the league over targeted tackling and fought the N.F.L. on rules.

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