Philadelphia Eagles News

Scouting Report: Sean Payton Eyes His Former Players

New Orleans head coach Sean Payton held a conference call with Philadelphia reporters this week and discussed the three former Saints who now have integral roles for the Eagles.

Payton on RB Darren Sproles: "He's one of the smartest players that we've ever coached here. What I mean by that is rarely on the field, does he ever do something that surprises the quarterback. He's got a great feel for the passing game. He's got very good instincts as a runner and I think his preparation – you might have a walkthrough but it isn't really a walkthrough for Darren. Just how he approaches each day, I think it's rare. He's had an amazing career. Again, he was fantastic for us."

Payton on S Malcolm Jenkins: "He was probably one of the most important parts to our Super Bowl run (in 2009). It was his rookie season, but I told him after the game that I love him. I know the feeling's mutual. I've just got a ton of respect for him as a player and also as a person. He's a fantastic, fantastic player and just as good of a person. ... Probably one of the bigger mistakes we've made (allowing him to leave in free agency) and I think you gotta be able to look at him and say, 'How did that happen?' But letting him out of the building certainly wasn't a smart decision.

Payton on Jenkins' on-field leadership: "If you watch any of the games, you see the communication. He's got a great feel for what they're wanting to be in. He wears a lot of hats. He's playing an inside position in the dime. He's playing at safety in the nickel, obviously in the base. It's not unusual to see him cover a slot receiver man-to-man. He clearly is one of the signal callers that starts it."

Payton on RB/KR Boston Scott: "We scouted him very closely because he was right up the road here (at Louisiana Tech) and worked him out as a returner and also as a runner. He's got extremely good balance and vision. He's got very quick acceleration. He's a pleasure to coach and be around. He's got one of those upbeat personalities. He's someone that's a very good teammate."

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