METAIRIE, La. (AP) New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton has named Curtis Johnson a senior offensive assistant and wide receivers coach. Payton has also hired Ryan Nielsen as defensive line coach.
Johnson, whose new titles were announced Thursday, previously coached Saints receivers from 2006 to 2011 and left on good terms to become head coach at Tulane from 2012 to 2015. The New Orleans native spent last season with Chicago, but resigned recently when John Morton, the Saints receivers coach the past two seasons, accepted a job as the New York Jets' offensive coordinator.
Nielsen has coached in college for 14 years. From 2013 to 2016, he was the defensive line coach at North Carolina State, which last season ranked eighth in the Football Bowl Subdivision in run defense and led the ACC.