Sean Payton insists he still sees Drew Brees playing into 2020 as he plots talks with his starting quarterback over his future this week.
The New Orleans Saints suffered more play-off heartache at the hands of the Minnesota Vikings on Wild Card Weekend to end their Super Bowl dreams.
The success of highly paid back-up Teddy Bridgewater when Brees went down with an injury early in the season has fuelled speculation his time in New Orleans could be numbered.
Brees, 40, has reportedly been contacted by TV networks over following Tony Romo into an analyst role next season, rather than continuing his playing career.
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But Payton has played down the chances of Brees hanging up his cleats and confirmed he is plotting a low-key chat to discuss his future this week.
Appearing on ESPN's NFL Countdown over the weekend, Payton was asked about Brees' future and the chance of him moving into a TV role.
He responded: "Listen, at some point that’s going to happen. You guys just asked me about joining a booth and I’ve still got five years left on my contract.
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"I do think he’s one of those guys that whatever he touches — business, obviously football, and whatever his future holds when he’s done playing he’s going to be successful at.
"But I still think, and based on what we just finished watching and grading, which was the body work of all season, he was outstanding.
"He’s got more football left in the tank. I see him on our field this upcoming season."
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Asked when he will have a conversation about next season, Payton declared: "There’s never that formal sit-down. He takes time, we all take time away from the stretch of the season. And then at some point you begin looking forward.
"At this stage, it’s year to year, he said that before and it’s kinda been the same with the Saints.
"We’ll communicate clearly with him. I’ll see him, shoot, he’ll be in town tomorrow, probably at the game tomorrow night."
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