Patriots coming to NFC South this summer

It’s almost like the New England Patriots will be joining the NFC South this preseason.

They’re going to take part in joint practices with the Saints and Falcons. Mike Reiss reports the Saints will practice with the Patriots before the teams open their preseason Aug. 12 in New England. New Orleans coach Sean Payton and New England coach Bill Belichick became friends while coaching in the Pro Bowl after the 2006 season and that could have helped lead to the decision to have a joint practice.

We already knew the Patriots were going to have a joint workout with the Falcons on Aug. 17, two days before the teams play a preseason game in Atlanta. The Falcons also will have joint workouts at their facility in Flowery Branch with the Jacksonville Jaguars on Aug. 9 and 10.