WEST SULPHUR SPRINGS, WV (WVUE) - Sean Payton and Mickey Loomis took center stage the day before the Saints' start training camp, but many of the questions they answered weren't about players on their roster.
Head Coach Sean Payton and General Manager Mickey Loomis met with the media Wednesday in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia. A slough of questions were asked about released pass rusher Junior Galette. Each said with resolve that they had no regrets about their handling of the entire situation.
Reporters asked Loomis if he would handle contract negotiations differently than he did a year ago when he gave Galette a 4-year extension. "I rarely do anything without my eyes being wide open and doing a lot of reflection and thought behind any decision," Loomis said. "I think some people would say I'm too slow, so that doesn't change and yet. I've got to look at this and think what we could have done differently, what red flags were missed, and learn from it. We have to look at ourselves with a critical eye."
Payton added that waiting any longer and allowing Galette to distract the team at training camp was not a better alternative. "It's not easy and yet, at the same time, a mistake magnified three times ... pretending that it doesn't need to be done if you feel like it needs to be ... Obviously it became a decision about the team," Payton said.
Rookies Hau'Oli Kikaha and Davis Tull are expected to compete with veteran free agent signing Anthony Spencer for the role of pass rushing outside linebacker. Galette remains a free agent after being released Monday.