Fox Sports insider and NFL Network contributor Jay Glazer reported Sunday that the Saints received written permission from the NFL to negotiate Payton's contract during his suspension.
This isn't exactly surprising news. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said last week to NFL.com NFL Network reporter Ian Rapoport that the contract situation is "Up to the team and Sean Payton .... Until I get something back, it's up to them."
That indicated the NFL was waiting to hear from the Saints before they ruled on Paytons' contract status. Until a new deal is reached, there are questions about if Payton could be a coaching free agent after the season.
Follow Gregg Rosenthal on Twitter @greggrosenthal.