New York (AFP) – New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton will pay to fix the fire alarm he shattered in the NFL visitors locker room before Sunday’s triumph at Cincinnati, he said Monday.
The Saints stretched their win streak to eight games with a 51-14 rout of the Cincinnati Bengals, but only after Payton silenced a blaring pre-game wall-mounted fire alarm at Paul Brown Stadium by smashing it.
“I destroyed a fire alarm before the game,” Payton said. “Destroyed would be a little bit sensationalist.”
A photo of the alarm in the Times-Picayune newspaper showed broken bits scattered atop a locker, exposed wiring behind a dangling front plate and a fallen sensor panel.
The alarm began sounding as Payton was making final game plans and wanting to communicate with players.
“Clearly we were having issues with the fire alarm at a time, 20-30 minutes before we’re suipposed to be out. It was going on for 10 minutes and I just needed the noise to stop,” Payton said.
“Gladly we’ll take care of the repair costs.”
Payton said he had “a lot of respect” for the Bengals team and organization and did not smash the alarm in any way to send some motivational message to his team before the contest.
“It was just something that had gone on and in order for us, as we got ready for the game, I thought it was very important,” Payton said.
At 8-1, the Saints have the third-best record in the NFL, just behind the pace-setting Kansas City Chiefs and Los Angeles Rams at 9-1.