Sean Payton headed back to the Saints

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It is expected to be a blood bath on Monday when more than a handful of NFL coaches could be fired.

One intriguing candidate with a Super Bowl ring and one team will not be in play, however.

Sean Payton, the suspended coach of the Saints is headed back to New Orleans. Jay Glazer of Fox Sports reported that Payton and the team have reached an agreement in principle on a five-year contract extension. Payton’s contract had been voided by the NFL.

Payton was forced to sit out the entire season for his role in the Saints’ bounty scandal. He is eligible to return after the Super Bowl, which will be held in New Orleans on Feb. 3. It’s not known if Payton could possibly be granted an early return.

There were some rumors that Payton could leave the Saints for the Dallas Cowboys, where he was an assistant under Bill Parcells. But the Cowboys are not expected to part ways with Jason Garrett and most figured all along that Payton would remain in place with the Saints.

New Orleans (7-8) has struggled all season under interim coach Joe Vitt and prior to that the interim to the interim coach, Aaron Kromer. With quarterback Drew Brees in place, the Saints are potent but there is work to be done for them to return to elite status.

Follow me on Twitter: @BradBiggs

Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune

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