Payton addresses civil suit which alleges Vicodin abuse

In between some opening questions about the lawsuit the former head of security of the New Orleans Saints has filed against the team and some closing questions about the situation, coach Sean Payton was able to discuss some football today between the team’s rookie minicamp workouts.

But we’ll focus on the lawsuit situation, which has alleged that Payton abused the prescription pain killer Vicodin.

“I really can’t (talk about it),” Payton said. “With respect to the process, that’s the position I’m in. I understand the questions surrounding it, yet I’m not at liberty. I think as time goes forward, we’ll know more and more.”

Through the team, Payton denied the allegations contained in the civil suit last week. The lawsuit also alleged that assistant coach Joe Vitt stole Vicodin at the team’s facility for an ongoing medical condition.

Obviously, the lawsuit could not have surprised the organization. At some level, the team engaged in settlement talks with the former head of security, and the Saints had to know it was possible this matter would spill public as it has.

“Fortunately most of the time and attention has been for us in this offseason in regards to workouts, the roster, the signings of guys like Jahri Evans and Darren Sharper and this camp, which is always the second weekend after the NFL draft,” Payton said. “That’s where our focus is.”

Payton said he has not addressed the issue with his players. While he denied the allegations in a statement through the team, Vitt has not spoken on the matter.

“It would be inappropriate for me to speak on anyone’s behalf,” Payton said. “He’s someone I think a lot of and having hired him in our first year here, he has as much to do with this Super Bowl run that we had as anyone in this building. But I don’t think that would be fair, nor would it be right or appropriate.”

In other words, stay tuned.

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