Saints planning to return to New Orleans after Week 3

The New Orleans Saints might be able to play their next scheduled home game in their home stadium.

Coach Sean Payton said his team is planning to return to New Orleans after its Week 3 game against the Patriots. The Saints have been operating out of Texas for the better part of a month because of Hurricane Ida. They'll continue practicing at Texas Christian University's facilities until next Friday, before leaving a day early for their road game in New England. They're then scheduled to host the Giants in Week 4 on Oct. 3.

New Orleans, which saw its home season opener versus the Packers relocated to Jacksonville, plays this weekend at Carolina.

There was a chance Payton's staff, which recently had six assistant coaches test positive for COVID-19, would be intact for the Week 2 meeting, but the team announced Friday that seven staff members -- Jim Chaney, Declan Doyle, Phil Galiano, Curtis Johnson, Brendan Nugent, Dan Roushar, Joel Thomas -- will not be in attendance.

Payton said previously that the assistant coaches could've made Saturday's team flight if they tested negative Friday and Saturday.

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