Seven Saints out for Sunday practice at the Greenbrier

The Saints are coming home.

After holding the first phase of training camp in West Virginia the past three years, the team announced it will be holding camp at the team's facility on Airline Drive in Metairie. 

"Our entire organization is excited to be returning to hold training camp at our facility in Metairie in 2017," owner Tom Benson said in a statement. "This will be a great opportunity for our passionate fans from throughout the Gulf South to be able to experience the fun, excitement and interaction of Saints training camp as our team prepares for what we expect to be a very exciting season."

The Houston Texans recently announced they will be holding camp at The Greenbrier with the Saints coming back home. New Orleans finished 7-9 each of the past three seasons.

The team previously held training camp at Metairie from 2003-2005 and from 2009-2013. The Saints practiced at Millsaps College in Jackson, Mississippi, from 2006-2008.

General manager Mickey Loomis thanked The Greenbrier and West Virginia Gov. Jim Justin, who owns the resort, for their hospitality the past three seasons and said it was an outstanding experience in a statement.

"However, we have decided that holding training camp at our practice facility is the right thing to do for our club at this time, where we have the combination of an indoor practice facility in the case of inclement weather as well as access to all of the state-of-the art technology in areas such as our medical, weight and video facilities, all factors which are integral to supporting the preparations of our football team," Loomis said. 

Saints coach Sean Payton told reporters at the Super Bowl that he expects to practice against the Houston Texans at some point during training camp. Those sessions are expected to take place in Metairie. 

The Saints and Texans have practiced together several times throughout the years, most recently last season when New Orleans traveled to Houston to conduct joint sessions before a preseason game. 

Typically, when the team practices outdoors at camp, those sessions are open to the public. In previous seasons, when the team opened camp at on the road, it returned home and kept the final leg of camp open.

Most teams close camp at that point. It is not yet known if New Orleans will follow the same procedure this year. 

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Follow Nick Underhill on Twitter, @nick_underhill.​