Sean Payton played a round of golf with tour pro Ryan Palmer, posed for photos with his ever-supportive fans, then spoke about his eagerness to get back to coaching football as early as this fall.
No, not pro football. However, Payton's son, Connor, who will soon turn 12, will be playing football in suburban Dallas in the fall. And his father plans to be on the sideline and very involved.
"One of the things I'm looking forward to doing this fall is helping coach my son's football team and doing a few things that you normally wouldn't be able to do (while coaching in the NFL)," Payton, the suspended New Orleans Saints coach, said Wednesday after playing in the Zurich Classic pro-am in Avondale, La.
"I look forward to cutting the oranges, hauling the Gatorade and watching my son play every game -- and being a part of calling plays for his offense and doing some things like that that really get me excited and I know get him excited."
While Payton seems to be coming to grips with his season-long suspension for his role in the Saints' "bounty" program, he was annoyed by recently reported wiretapping allegations against the team.
"It's hogwash," Payton said about the allegations that general manager Mickey Loomis' Superdome booth was wired so he could eavesdrop on opposing coaches from 2002 to 2004.
"It's garbage," Payton continued. "Obviously, I wasn't here (he came to New Orleans to 2006), but I know Mickey Loomis well enough, and I would consider him a close friend and professionally one of the best general managers in sport. ... If you really study what he does in the booth, he listens closely to the broadcast, watches the games and for him to begin to try to dissect that language and everything -- just the way it was reported was awful, I'll say that."
Payton's suspension began April 16 and runs through the February Super Bowl, which, incidentally, is in New Orleans. During that time, Payton may not even have casual, non-football conversations with anyone on any NFL team without at least notifying the league office.
Payton said he wouldn't be able to enter a stadium on weekends, but that he still could fill a television role. The Times-Picayune reported that the coach is considering working in TV.
If Payton finds such extensive restrictions upsetting in any way, he didn't let on after his round of golf.
"It's unimportant how I feel. Really it's just the terms of the suspension, and it'll be easy to follow and pay attention to," Payton said. "I told (NFL executive) Ray (Anderson) when we first began talking that we'll talk frequently."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.