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Sean Payton ‘absolutely’ expects Brandin Cooks to be back with the Saints in 2017

Brandin Cooks has been a hot subject to trading rumors, but is that real? Sean Payton has the answer for you.

NFL: New Orleans Saints at Arizona Cardinals Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

There’s been plenty of speculation that's caught steam over the past few months on the future of New Orleans Saints wide receiver Brandin Cooks. Perhaps those rumors can be put to bed now after head coach Sean Payton's Tuesday morning interview with Tom Pelissero on Mad Dog Sports Radio.

The most interesting tidbit to come from the nearly 12-minute interview, which can be listened to below, was around the future of Cooks. Payton was asked about anticipating whether or not Cooks would be around in 2017, to which a quick answer of "absolutely I do" was given.

Payton added, "He's a magnificent kid. Worker. He's not a kid anymore. He's a tremendous player. He practices 100 miles an hour. You have to slow him down some. He's got a great rapport with Drew."

Naturally, Payton went there on the Rams game in which Cooks didn't see any touches, calling it unusual when you score 50 points. The reports and speculation that came out afterwards, were generally labeled an agent-driven complaint by Payton.

"We're up till 2 in the morning thinking about ways to get him open or getting him on the right matchup. When the players know that, I think they know that they're getting a real good script," Payton added.

Payton was obviously asked about the Saints and the offseason, to which he echoed recent thoughts given to the team's Senior Writer John DeShazier on the need to obtain a pass rusher (it's a must) and cornerback (also a must). He mentioned that the draft had a strong class at running back, safety, and depth at cornerback. Payton also weighed in on the Super Bowl, the recent Pelicans blockbuster trade, Garrett Grayson, and how awesome Drew Brees is.