Photos of Peyton Manning vs. the New Orleans Saints over the years. Photos by Michael C. Hebert and Associated Press.
Sean Payton was a guest on "SiriusXM NFL Radio" with Bob Papa and Takeo Spikes Tuesday morning. Below are some highlights from the interview:
On Peyton Manning retiring:
"He did more at the line of scrimmage than any other quarterback or offense. He saw alignments and what you were in defensively. We played his teams a handful of times and if you ever just gave him what you have been showing on film, even with disguise, he was so good at recognizing indicators and getting his team to the best play. The consistency at which he would accurately deliver the football or come up with a big play…that happened year after year after year. It doesn't seem like it was too long ago where we are at the Combine weigh ins and I remember the big comparisons being made between him and Ryan Leaf. He's had an amazing career."
On improving the Saints defense:
"For us to have a chance to win, we have to be better on that side of the ball. The first thing that comes to mind is that we have to be able to rush the passer better. We have to get that quarterback throwing it under '3-Mississippi.' When we all played in the streets it was '3-Mississipi.' Someone would cheat once in a while and they would rush you when they weren't finished counting. We have to speed up the clock in the quarterback's head. There are a handful of positions on defense. Whether you are getting your pressure from the inside or outside, that needs to be something we are looking at. We have to look at how our scheme fits for our personnel. When you finish in that spot (last in defense), and it starts with me, there are a lot of dirty hands. It's not just one player or one draft pick. It's hard to finish in that area. When we have been good and had successful playoff runs we have been a defense that's been in the top 10 or taken the ball away at an extremely high rate. I think up front, our front seven, our pass rush and possibly in the back end (add) another player. We have some young corners that we feel really good about. We were fortunate with the signing of Delvin Breaux out of the CFL. That was a real big plus us. He has played well. Keenan Lewis will be healthy. The front seven is one area (that needs to be addressed) and if you look at our roster right now, with the loss of Jahri Evans, guard would certainly stick out as an area that we have to be able to find through the draft or free agency."
On keeping Drew Brees healthy:
"Two years ago, he pulled his oblique in training camp, it hindered him a bit and bothered him. It was one of those injuries where when you are a thrower of any sort it's hard not to activate it in the throwing motion. At the end of that season he spent a lot time with a handful of people on technique and mechanics. He's one of those guys that's very thorough with his preparation and recovery.
"There will be days in the schedule where we'll back off in the p.m. session. The two-a-days that we once knew really don't exist, so he may not throw in that p.m. But I would definitely say that he is mindful and has a pitch count and we kind of work as we progress into the games. Some of his better games these last two to three seasons have come on the short weeks where we have had more of walkthrough-type practices."