Vikings hated rival could be returning to old team in 2023

(Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) Sean Payton
(Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) Sean Payton /

After a year away from the NFL, longtime Minnesota Vikings rival, Sean Payton, could reportedly return to the New Orleans Saints in 2023.

Outside of the NFC North, there are few teams around the NFL that Minnesota Vikings fans have more hatred for than the New Orleans Saints, especially when Sean Payton was their head coach.

Vikings fans grew a distaste for Payton and the Saints following the controversial 2009 NFC Championship and the intense meetings between the two franchises only increased these feelings.

This season, Minnesota and New Orleans have yet to cross paths (a playoff matchup is still a slim possibility), and Payton has been working as an analyst for FOX’s NFL coverage. However, a report recently indicated that the former head coach could potentially return to the Saints’ sidelines in 2023.

Minnesota Vikings could face Sean Payton and the New Orleans Saints again in 2023

On Tuesday, ProFootballTalk’s Mike Florio shared some intriguing info that was given to him by a source “with a finger firmly on the pulse of pro football.” This source told Florio that Payton returning to the NFL in 2023 as New Orleans’ head coach is the “worst-kept secret” in the league.

Dennis Allen is the current head coach of the Saints, and heading into Week 17, the team has a 6-9 record with a very slim chance to make the playoffs (three percent, according to FiveThirtyEight)

If Payton does in fact return to New Orleans as the franchise’s head coach, a matchup inside U.S. Bank Stadium against the Vikings would be something that awaits him in 2023.

Minnesota will be facing every NFC South and AFC West team during the 2023 season, so the Vikings could get a chance to add another chapter to their bitter rivalry with Payton and the Saints.

This will certainly be something to keep a close eye on during the upcoming offseason.

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