The New Orleans Saints and suspended coach Sean Payton will indeed be together again next season as the bounty scandal fades into history and the bid to win a second Super Bowl resumes.
Payton has agreed in principle to a multiyear contract extension, the team said.
Though the team did not disclose the length of the extension or financial terms, ESPN is reporting the deal is expected to be worth more than $8 million annually. That would make him one of the highest paid coaches in the league.
''Very happy it is official,'' quarterback Drew Brees said in an email to the AP. ''Never had any doubts.''
Payton was due to begin his seventh season as the Saints' head coach in 2012 before being suspended for the whole season by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell in connection with the NFL's bounty investigation.
''I am pleased that Sean Payton will be our head coach for a long time,'' owner Tom Benson said in a statement. ''Now we can focus our attention on building on the winning tradition...