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With Payton Out, Saints Face Uncharted Waters

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What now?

The most difficult aspect of the path forward for the New Orleans Saints and coach Sean Payton is that there is no frame of reference to draw from. There is no manual, no one you can call and ask, "What do you do when your head coach is suspended for a year?"

First and foremost, the organization -- and more specifically owner Tom Benson -- has to determine whether it will stay with Sean Payton as the head coach in 2013, when the suspension is lifted. Payton has brought the Saints and the city of New Orleans a great deal of success, and because of that, it is hard to imagine that Benson would bail on Payton and general manager Mickey Loomis at this point. That being said, in the coming days, Payton, Loomis and Benson have to create a structure that will...

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