The Dolphins’ soon-to-be ex-offensive lineman Richie Incognito was suspended indefinitely for harassing fellow offensive lineman Jonathan Martin. I’m sure most of you know how badly Incognito harassed Martin, but for those of you who do not know (or have been living under a rock), here are the details:
ESPN shared an April voicemail from Incognito that included racial slurs and physical threats toward Martin, which included the following:
“Hey, wassup, you half nigger piece of shit. I saw you on Twitter, you been training 10 weeks. [I want to] shit in your fucking mouth. [I’m going to] slap your fucking mouth. [I’m going to] slap your real mother across the face [laughter]. Fuck you, you’re still a rookie. I’ll kill you.”
Martin also was the victim of persistent harassment from Incognito since Martin was a rookie in 2012. Incognito made Martin pay $12,000 for a Las Vegas trip that he didn’t want to attend with teammates. There was an incident in the lunch room that proved to be Martin’s breaking point, causing him to take a leave of absence from the Dolphins.
A brief investigation ensued and surely enough, the details surrounding Incognito’s role came out.
Now if that wasn’t bad enough, word on the street is that the coaches wanted Incognito to toughen Martin up after the latter missed a voluntary workout last spring. You read that right folks, the coaches wanted to send Martin a message – seemingly by any means necessary.
Omar Kelly of the Sun Sentinel had the following report:
Miami Dolphins’ coaches asked football player Richie Incognito, who was the offensive line’s undisputed leader, to toughen up teammate Jonathan Martin after he missed a voluntary workout last spring, at least two sources told the Sun Sentinel.
The sources told the paper they believe that Incognito, who is accused of using racially incendiary language and bullying tactics against Martin, may have taken those orders too far.
Sources say that dialogue took place when Martin skipped two days of the team’s OTA program, and Incognito was encouraged by his coaches to make a call that would “get him into the fold,” one source said.
Now what does that tell us? Well, it tells me that the sentiments of members of the coaching staff not knowing what was going on between Incognito and Martin was a bunch of bullshit. I mean let’s face it, something like that occurring from a guy who was voted a captain by the team and NO ONE KNEW ABOUT IT? Please.
Also players along the offensive line are said to be among the most tight-knit group on any football team. The trust that those guys have to have for each other on the field necessitates it. Hell, Incognito and Martin lined up beside each other! And cats like center Mike Pouncey didn’t know about it? Again, bullshit.
With the racial slurs Incognito hurled at Martin, one would think the Dolphins’ black players would rally around Martin. Not really. Mike Wallace and Cameron Wake not only denied they knew what was going on, but went on to say that they thought Incognito was a good guy. Wallace, in particular, went as far as saying that he “loved Incognito as a brother”.
I have my own theory why I think Martin is on an island in the Dolphins’ locker room. On the blog’s Facebook page, I offered up the possibility that Martin might be gay. I also think that Martin may be perceived as too “square” and soft to the other players for allowing the bullying to go on (and for maybe thinking Martin is hot stuff since he graduated from Stanford and has parents who are lawyers).
Look, I could go on and on about how this may/will permanently fuck up the Dolphins’ locker room and thus torpedo their season. A lot of people in the sports media who get paid a helluva lot more than I do are already beating that drum to death.
All I’m going to say is something has to be done to rectify this drama in Miami, and it may come in the form of owner Stephen Ross. He is reportedly not too pleased to see his team dragged through the mud like this.
I’ll say this: if the Dolphins lose to the winless Tampa Bay Buccaneers Monday night, the head coach (and possibly the general manager who signed Incognito) might be fired before leaving the field.