Payton, who was suspended for the entire 2011 season due to his role in the team’s bounty scandal, met with Goodell on Monday. According to the NFL’s release, Payton “acknowledged in the meeting his responsibility for the actions of his coaching staff and players and pledged to uphold the highest standards of the NFL and ensure that his staff and players do so as well.”
Said Goodell: “We had a very productive discussion. Sean fully complied with all the requirements imposed on him during his suspension. More important, it is clear that Sean understands and accepts his responsibilities as a head coach and the vital role that coaches play in promoting player safety and setting an example for how the game should be played at all levels. We are committed to delivering football that fans love and the safety players deserve. Coach Payton agrees and I look forward to working with him going forward to do that.”
Payton released his own statement  following the league’s release:
I am thankful today Commissioner Goodell has granted me reinstatement. As I stated back in March, “I, along with Mickey Loomis , take full responsibility for all aspects of our football program.”
I clearly recognize that mistakes were made, which led to league violations. ‘¨’¨Furthermore, I have assured the Commissioner a more diligent protocol will be followed.
Lastly, I feel we have learned from our mistakes and are ready to move forward. I want to thank our owner, Mr. Benson and all of our great fans for the overwhelming support throughout this past year.
I am excited to be back as Head Coach of the New Orleans Saints !