Loomis returns to Saints in unsettled times

Associated Press
FILE - This April 26, 2012 file photo shows New Orleans Saints general manager Mickey Loomis during a media availability about the NFL draft at the team's training facility in Metairie, La. His eight-game suspension over, Loomis returns to work Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2012, for a Saints franchise that needs to resolve complications with suspended coach Sean Payton's contract. (AP Photo/Matthew Hinton, File)
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FILE - This April 26, 2012 file photo shows New Orleans Saints general manager Mickey Loomis during a media availability about the NFL draft at the team's training facility in Metairie, La. His eight-game suspension over, Loomis returns to work Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2012, for a Saints franchise that needs to resolve complications with suspended coach Sean Payton's contract. (AP Photo/Matthew Hinton, File)

METAIRIE, La. (AP) — Having served his eight-game suspension in connection with the NFL's bounty probe of the New Orleans Saints, general manager Mickey Loomis has returned to work at team headquarters in time to deal with a variety of unsettled personnel issues and off-the-field distractions.

His immediate tasks include clearing up the status of Payton's five-year contract extension, which NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has so far refused to approve since the coach signed it in 2011.

Loomis also will have to oversee contingency plans in the event defensive end Will Smith and linebacker Jonathan Vilma have to serve their own bounty suspensions, which so far have been delayed.

The club has not made Loomis available to media yet, but assistant head coach Joe Vitt says the Saints are glad he's back.

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