NEW ORLEANS — Former Saints head coach Sean Payton is cheering for the Cincinnati Bengals during the playoffs, but he isn't letting up on the "Who Dey" vs. "Who Dat" debate.
In his retirement press conference Tuesday, the former Miami University offensive coordinator said he is rooting for Cincinnati and its trio of former Saints players in the postseason.
"When they end up on a different roster, man we're pulling for you," Payton said. "I'm pulling for Vonn Bell and Trey (Hendrickson)...Eli (Apple) a little bit."
Bell and Hendrickson were both drafted by the the Saints, while Apple played two seasons in New Orleans. Apple recently tweeted his disdain for the Saints fan base and the city of New Orleans, calling it the "dirtiest smelliest city" with "the worst food ever."
Payton: "When players end up on a different roster, man we are pulling for them. I am pulling for Vonn Bell, Trey....Eli a little bit." 😏 pic.twitter.com/F0WuxuKCvS— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) January 25, 2022
While Payton said he is cheering for this year's Bengals squad, he did squeeze in that the "Who Dat" chant came first.
"I'll be honest, when I hear the Bengals — and I'm rooting kind of for Cincinnati a little bit in the postseason — but the 'Who Dey' thing, it came after," Payton said.
The "Who Dey" chant rose in popularity during the Bengals' 1981 season, while The Times-Picayune in New Orleans reports the Saints embraced "Who Dat" in 1983. Still, both fan bases say their chant's origins go back even further.
Whether he's chanting "Who Dey" or not, it's good to have a Super Bowl champ cheering on the Bengals.