Sean Payton said Rob Ryan is still employed by the team, but did not say Ryan's job is safe. In his Monday bye week presser, he brought up the topic before taking questions and said he had just learned about the report from Alex Marvez saying two sources told Fox Sports that Ryan was to be fired as a result of the defensive debacle in Washington. To elaborate, he would only say that he and general manager Mickey Loomis have not yet met to evaluate coaches and players. He flatly refused to take anymore questions on the topic after that.
Sean Payton says he hasn't talked to Mickey about Rob Ryan and that Ryan is still a member of his staff. pic.twitter.com/HlXRAjdtnH— Lyons Yellin WWL-TV (@LyonsYellin) November 16, 2015
He did say without getting specific that changes will be made on defense. His message to the players today was it will not remain the same and it might not go down well for some. He said they are determined to get the defense fixed even if it takes some time.
I can't put my finger on it, but there is something very odd about Sean Payton these days. Whether it's something regarding him personally or some high level of dysfunction throughout the Saints organization, something seems very off. His mind and heart doesn't seem all that into the job anymore. In the Washington collapse on Sunday, he could be seen asking what down it was at one point in the game. Earlier in the season, he didn't seem to know the NFL catch rule. I don't pretend to know what's going on with him, but from a fan perspective he doesn't seem to be the same enthusiastic head coach he was 2006-2011.
He has become so toxic with reporters during his press conferences that I'm actually starting to feel sorry for them, and that's something I never do. Payton tore into one reporter today when he asked what he thought about Brandon Browner and his perceived cheap shot on Sunday. He sarcastically accused the reporter of having a deep grudge against Browner regarding some past history. I couldn't make out exactly which reporter this was, but I'm assuming it was WWLTV reporter Lyons Yellin.
It remains to be seen if Rob Ryan will indeed be fired during the Saints' current bye week. Most people seem to think that he will and the reason Payton shot down the Marvez report was all about timing. Whatever happens between now and their next game at Houston on November 29th, I wouldn't hold out much hope that this team can turn things around. The dysfunction seems too great and Sean Payton seems delusional regarding the current state of the Saints.