For shame Jason Smith, for shame. I suppose I could have done a little digging before treating the information that Sean Payton replaced Mark Ingram in the backfield when he was two yards to paydirt away from an additional 100K as fact, but doing literally anything more than looking next to someone's name to see if there's a blue check mark is too much due diligence for my liking. Respect the integrity of the verified account previously unknown Fox Sports radio/author guy. If the Saints beat reporters would know better then how about checking with them instead of potentially spreading a false rumor that makes an NFL Head Coach look like a complete cocksucker? If requesting that someone not treat the casual speculation between a couple guys bullshitting in a truck as gospel is too much to ask then asking that person to own up to their mistake instead of letting a bunch of smaller, less in-the-know sources run with it certainly shouldn't be. The only thing that's worse than misinformation is blaming someone else for the reporting of it. I know that makes me a hypocrite, but the beauty of not having an "official" twitter account is that I am allowed to be!
Anyway, I suppose the fact that Tim Hightower was the one who was brought closer to achieving a more valuable (relative to his contract) bonus should change my opinion on the situation, but it really doesn't. Obviously I don't want Mark Ingram flipping his lid and becoming a distraction every time the ball gets handed off to someone else in scoring position, but I don't mind him showing that he's competetitor that wants to be trusted with closing the game from time to time. If we are being honest, the fact that he only has 3 rushing touchdowns while only being 150 yards short of 1,000 (and the actual bonus in his contract) seems a little disproportionate. The guy has had goal line touches vultured from him all season (Insert "Kuuuuhhhhn!" Here) and it took until Week 16 for him to make a stink about it. I don't think that makes him a selfish dick that's only looking out for his own stat line. I think it makes him fiery guy that just wants more opportunities to contribute to the team's success. He's playing the most physically demanding position in the most violent league on Earth so I think I have it in my heart to forgive him for letting his emotions get the better of him once a season.
I am slightly disappointed in myself though. I should have known better than thinking that Sean Payton hadn't carefully considered all the statistical milestones and the symbolism behind each and every score. Tim Hightower was deserving of the chance to put a victory on ice after coming back to the place he started his career before he overcame the insane odds of making it back to the NFL after four years away from professional football. Surely his second touchdown of the the game - that basically put it out of reach for good - meant more to him and his search for an extra 65K in his bank account than Mark Ingram's 851st and 852nd yards would have meant to his search for an extra 100K in his much larger bank account. At the end of the day, Sean Payton was cleared of charges of being a petty, frugal asshole, Mark Ingram got to blow off a little steam, Tim Hightower had his sentimental moment, the Saints won, and some dick who is to proud to claim responsibility of his fictitious tweet is going to get raked over the coals. All's well that ends well baby!