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Sean Payton: Recently acquired RB Mark Ingram 'absolutely' has a chance to play vs. Bucs

Mark Ingram is back in New Orleans in a reunion of "Boom and Zoom."

It shouldn't come as a surprise that the Zoom half of the duo was pulling some strings to get Boom back in town. What is surprising, though, is that Zoom -- Alvin Kamara -- was a few steps behind coach Sean Payton and general manager Mickey Loomis in bringing Boom -- Mark Ingram -- to the Saints.

"(Ingram) can't (reach out to me), and he didn't," Payton said, via the team's official site. "But his little partner in crime did.

"Alvin said something to me, I forget where, and I was like, 'Listen, buddy. You're on, like, C, and I'm on, like, M.' I said, 'So catch up, we're already down that road.'"

Payton and Loomis began their trip down said road in Seattle, where it became apparent the Saints might need someone to pair with Kamara following the departure of Latavius Murray and injury to Tony Jones. Kamara mentioned the idea of bringing his old pal back to New Orleans, and the coach and GM were already "poking around" to see if the Texans had any interest in a deal.

"Alvin and he obviously are real close, and once that momentum began -- I was still somewhat skeptical, just relative to the role he was playing for them," Payton explained. "And (Wednesday), kind of went back and forth and fortunately, we were able to work something out. His plane landed. He won't be able to practice today, he'll be able to practice (Friday)."

Ingram won't practice until Friday, Payton said. The running back won't need much more than a passed physical and a quick refresher on the basics of the Saints' offense -- in which Ingram thrived, rushing for 6,007 yards and 50 touchdowns in eight seasons in New Orleans -- to be able to play as soon as Sunday.

"Absolutely," Payton said of Ingram's chances of playing. "That's a good chance. Absolutely. That's like a high chance."

It's a big matchup: The 6-1 Buccaneers come to town in the latest iteration of the NFC South rivalry. The Saints could close the gap between them and the defending champs with a win.

If there's one Saint who's familiar with beating Tampa Bay, it's Ingram. We'll see if he can help them score an upset victory in his Big Easy homecoming.

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