« Dolphins leadership? What Dolphins leadership? | Main | NFL pledges transparency with investigation findings »

Incognito considered black in Dolphins locker room

One of the most curious aspects of the Richie Incognito-Jonathan Martin story is how race has become very much a part of it outside the Dolphins locker room -- in the media and among fans and observers -- but not at all so far within the Dolphins locker room.

Think of this:

Richie Incognito left Jonathan Martin a voice mail that, among other things, called Martin a "half-n----r." And Dolphins players of color, knowing of the voicemail, have expressed no problems with Incognito.

"I don't have a problem with Richie," Mike Wallace said. "I love Richie."

"I don't think Richie is a racist," cornerback Brent Grimes said.

"Richie Incognito isn't a racist," tight end Michael Egnew said.

ESPN analyst and former Dolphins wide receiver Cris Carter has know Mike Pouncey since the player's childhood. Today Carter said on air he recently spoke to Mike Pouncey and the center, who is Incognito's friend, addressed race.

"They don't feel as if he's a racist, they don't feel as if he picked on Jonathan repeatedly and bullied him, but if they could do it all over again there would be situations that they might change but they’re very, very comfortable with Richie,” Carter said.

 “They think it’s sad, not only that Jonathan’s not on the football team, but also that Richie is being depicted as a bigot and as a racist.”

How is this possible?

Well, I've spoken to multiple people today about this and the explanation from all of them is that in the Dolphins locker room, Richie Incognito was considered a black guy. He was accepted by the black players. He was an honorary black man.

And Jonathan Martin, who is bi-racial, was not. Indeed, Martin was considered less black than Incognito.

"Richie is honarary," one player who left the Dolphins this offseason told me today. "I don't expect you to understand because you're not black. But being a black guy, being a brother is more than just about skin color. It's about how you carry yourself. How you play. Where you come from. What you've experienced. A lot of things."

Another former Dolphins employee told me Martin is considered "soft" by his teammates and that's a reason he's not readily accepted by some of the players, particularly the black players. His background -- Stanford educated and the son of highly educated people -- was not necessarily seen as a strength or a positive by some players and it perpetuated in the way Martin carried himself.

And so -- agree with it or not, comprehend it or not -- this is a reason the Dolphins haven't turned on Incognito as a racist.


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

As I said in the last blog, Martin is soft. Coaches & players knew it. That's why he was being ridden so hard.

His knock in College was strength but, he had great footwork. Ask any GM and they'll tell you you can build strength but, footwork is natural.

He could have become strong but, the strength he really lacks is mental toughness. You can' teach that or gain it in a weight room.

That's why he held onto the voice mail. Backs up claims of bullying/harassment. His way out of the league.

This will be all about lawyers at some point. But as it sits right now, Martin looks like a big baby.

Bill Clinton agrees with the brothers !

another wasted pick. How can he possibly come back to that locker room now.

anybody think this would have happenned if his parents werent Harvard lawyers?

Its funny Martin has a background more like Barack Obama. They don't like Martin because he's not "black enough" but they vote for and support Obama to the death because he is black. The only problem is Martin = Obama!

I understand it fully Mando. As someone who's background probably resembles Martin's pretty closely, I get all those racial intricacies. I felt like I had to "be down" in college to impress my black friends (that was where I felt more comfortable in my school) and so did things I thought would bring me respect (smoking dope, sleeping with numerous women, fighting). Unfortunately, too many people see that as bringing yourself "credibility" in the black community, and that's probably the biggest problem with the black community. My true black friends ended up respected me for being who I was (smart, friendly, comfortable around whites and other ethnicities). I learned to make distinctions between losers (thugs, hoodlums, etc.) and black folk that wanted to better themselves and lead respectable lives. One thing I learned that I think many in America still gloss over (or just see the stereotype) is there are MANY blacks who are trying to better themselves (across all classes). And in most cases they outnumber the losers. But America chooses to highlight the losers (remnants of its racist past) instead of promote the ones that are 'bout it, 'bout it.

Too bad the Dolphins players are still into that "thug life" mentality. Aaron Hernandez had to learn the hard way. Maybe Mike Pouncey will too. We'll see if the rest will figure out they are now MILLIONAIRES, so don't have to act like they got nothing and have to fight to get everything in life anymore. Their kids will be raised much differently than they were.

Johnathon Martin 100000% quit on this team- He is a coward who was going to lose his starting job

If he ever shows up in locker room again, he should be worried......

……yet Ireland drafted him in the 2nd round.

Ireland is a moron- We all know that

The assassination of Richie Incognito by the coward Johnathan Martin.

Free Richie!!!!!

This isn't even about race. Everyone has even reported Cogs was laughing on the voice mail but, people don't look at that.

Because Cogs is viewed as black or a n* or whatever word they use to characterize brotherhood in the locker room, he probably felt he had the latitude to leave such an outrageous voicemail, even if in jest & it not be that big of a deal. Apparently Martin doesn't view Cogs like the rest of the team.

Miami is making Cogs fall on the sword for Martin being a quitter & a wimp. Not excusing Cogs rants & behavior but, lets be real here.

Martin will never play a down in the NFL again if I had to make a bet. Does Miami want him after what he did? Causing Cogs to be suspended? All the media attention that will not go away, even after the season?

I can't see a team taking Martin in anymore.

Armando: WHY won't the 'former employe' and 'player who left team this off season' put their name on their opinion? It's BS: Calling a guy soft but being too cowardly not do it anonymously. If those guys are so tough, then why do they need to be anonymous...

Honorary is spelled not 'honarary, btw. Jonathan Martin could have told you that...

Incognito has been a big problem at two schools and now three NFL teams. He's done.

The only people that have a issues with this WHOLE thing are Martin and his camp...and the Media...both should pull their heads out of their collective arses...

Also, on the racism charge, that's the media's fault. Saying the "n" word isn't racism. It may be prejudice, but not racism. There's a distinction. Someone who has prejudice (and most of us do) use preconceived notions about other people (i.e. stereotypes) to paint a broad brush of their nature. Like seeing a slow driver and immediately saying, "must be Chinese."

Racism connotes the ability to have the power over someone to negatively affect their lives or hate someone just because of their race or feel superior to someone based on their race.

Incognito says the "n" word at the bar, then goes over and hugs Pouncey. That doesn't show him having a hatred of a race. White people who never would use the word around blacks they don't know might use it around blacks they are friendly with, because they are comfortable with them, and probably aren't using it as a derogatory slur to that black friend. Context is everything when using that word, especially in the younger generations, because the younger you are, the farther you are removed from the days when that word was used predominately in one way (the superiority meaning) during days when blacks were treated unfairly in society with the tacit approval of the government (national, state and local).

Mondo, who made you king for a day and HTF gave you permission to judge people?
Mondo you are the one who doesn't know football or the players. This article is nothing new to those who know that culture. You've been covering the Dolphins for how long and you are speechless at what you've uncovered. This is not a thug culture is about team,,,team,,,team, if you are a non hacker, you will not survive. Martin will not be back, not for any thing Incognito did but what the entire team did,,,face it Mondo these guys are not a Pop Warner football team that most sports media would love to make it. Bro,,,you just aint scoup'en. You don't know sh** when it comes to football and the team. Enter a SEAL team or Ranger "kill or capture" team and you'll see first hand why and how this culture survives. Martin knows he's not a team hacker.

You people are pathetic as is this whole team, organization. So let me get this straight. Riley cooper is vilified for using the n word. Richie incognito, a classless ignoramus is celebrated. Jonathan Martin who is black and well educated is considered less black because he doesn't fit a stereotype. Sounds like a bunch of bs to me.
Martin had a lot of courage to take this on.
Something you idiots never would.
And what does Obama have to do with. Sounds like people have and issue with well educated black men to me. Last point this behavior would not be tolerated in any other business and 50% of the other NFL. Philbin, Ireland and Incognito need to go. NOW!!

NFL football is a high stakes extremely intense sport/ business. It is a team game, not an individual sport. When a player like Martin who has a lot of talent under performs, the other members will do things to light a fire under him. Many times it works, sometimes it doesn't, and now sometimes it's a spectacle. It’s better left to the professionals in the locker room. We’re not talking about kids. These guys are high paid highly competitive athletes. If you can’t handle the pressure then go do something else for a living. Martin will have a tough time finding another team.


How else do you explain him holding onto the voicemail for all of this time?

I'm not buying that this stuff is somehow unique to the Dolphins' locker room. They've had so many trades from other teams, the secret wouldn't last long if the Fins were Hazing Hell.

Like Ricky W. said, some people exercise power by bullying, and others exercise power by being victims. And the latter seems to be how J. Martin played it. I'm sorry for the guy if that NFL sh*t isn't right for him, but let's not make a federal case out of it.

...and that's why- as you pointed out in your previous blog, Armando- context needs to be applied to the text of the voice mail everyone is pointing to as proof of Incognito's guilt.

It reads more as friend-to-friend to me: Richie calling Jon; Richie acknowledging Jon's off-season workouts; Richie reminding Jon that he'll always be a lesser player and rookie to him, etc. This is ragging, not harassment.

Yeah, no doubt the language, as we view it now, is reprehensible but that's the way these guys talk to one another. It is not meant for public consumption or scrutiny. It can only be assessed within the context of the relationship of those two.

If Phiblin and any of the staff gets fired for this...Armando should lose his job for his little email rant that was laced with prejudice...

F @ 12:19

You left Tannehill off the list of those that need to go.

The race thing is a red herring, not even a true part of the story. Players know this already, but the press and others with an agenda made an issue of it. Really silly.
Anyone who has played knows that color dissapears when your a team.

How else do you explain him holding onto the voicemail for all of this time?
Posted by: ExposingTheFraud | November 06, 2013 at 12:22 PM


"No hesitation in extermination of these snitches"

F, I agree, it's sad that being educated and well schooled is seen as a negative and not a positive. The black community realizes this and had tried to change the culture (listen to speeches by Bill Cosby, Juan Williams, Pres. Obama). Unfortunately, it's still an issue, and helps to explain the stereotype many outside of the black community have of blacks. This battle has been fought in education for years. Then it moved to entertainment. And now sports. It's actually good to see these things being aired publicly. The best thing that could happen is people learn and grow from this and not just sweep it under the rug.

Maybe he called John a half n***** because he wasn't n***** enough for Richie's liking??? I don't even know what that statement means but I think Richie despised the sweater vest wearing aspect of J Martin more than his half African American heritage...

I LOVE the fact that Martin wasn't getting the props because he didn't deserve them...uncle tom, peckerwood, snitchin' big little big beeotch!!!

Sticks and stones may break his bones but words will make Martin collect evidence like a snitch...then run like one...tossing everyone under the bus along the way...

smoking dope, sleeping with numerous women and fighting has nothing to do with being black or white DC ... just makes you a man and cool in my books.

Well, the fighting not so much sometimes people will get out of line and it can't be avoided.

But always have time for the first two ... (you can substitute weed for booze and cigars or what the heck, have all three and make sure to send me an invite)

Incognito is a sack-allowing machine among NFL guards. And his "leadership" obviously sucks. Nothing valuable was lost.

Bart Scott called RI a 'fake tough guy'. Classic.

DC, I live in a an area with a lot of Chinese .. it's not a stereotype, they can't drive!!!

Posted by: DC Dolfan | November 06, 2013 at 12:26 PM

Thats a dumb post...OL position is one of the most educated positions in the NFL...nobody looks down on anyone else for being educated...but if you go to a paintball fight and then cry because the red paint messied up your nice slacks then you should be slapped like a beeotch...and your mom should get slapped for raising you like one...

You want to call me names ecto, I hope you understand what mando just wrote.

"Player who left the Dolphins" - Sean Smith?

I'd say one of the backers...Dansby or Burnett...


Did Ireland ask Martin if his mother was a 'coal burner'?

It sounds like he went a little too far but I would like to hear the voicemail myself before condemning the guy. I for one couldn't remeber a voicemail I would have sent back in April. Gotta be more tothe story than just that.

if jonathan martin is brought back to this team I hope the fans boo him everytime he is introduced in the stadium. Cant take the heat get outta the league you wimp! Go work in the nfls front office. That's where all the lawyers are.


now he'll probably try to sue me cause that post was mean and I called him a wimp.

Bam. I had this exact conversation with my wife last night. I have never agreed with it but it is true. It has pissed me off to no end because at the end of the day the word comes from hate and a bad place. I told my wife their are instances where some people, esp if you have been friends with people are your life, growing up in the same area...well they are honorary. They can use the word and I said I guarantee you this was a case like that. Where richie felt he was comfortable enough to say it around the guys because they gave him a pass. One example of some associates who did this with a hispanic friend of theirs... every word was N this and in that. I confronted them on it saying essentially, 'what the hell is this? This is cool now?' The reply was they are cool. Not in my book. The word is bad, should be dropped. However, it's not viewed that way by all. Anyone remember the scene in white chicks when they were singing in the car...the wayan brothers gave them a pass essentially. Anyone remembe rthe black "white" supemacist in the Chapelle show. Yelling at he kids in the car, and their response...hilarious skit btw. However, for some its ok. richie is a fall guy! I guess some talking heads at ESPN may be eating some crow

"The Dolphins locker room is far more supportive of Incognito than Martin, a source told the Herald on Monday."

I mean what else needs to be said???

and Mando im disappointed in you big time. You and Beasley are just becoming click whores in regard to this story. Its not that big of a deal. The redskins name is way more racist than this story. Hazing is a part of life. Only the strong survive. This stuff goes on in the military and police and fire departments as well. I think the sun sentinels staff has been way more professional and patient to actually let the facts come out and not rush to judgement like you 2 have.

There you go Cogs haters....that enough information for you yet?

Statler, you read anything in there about Cogs being a 'negative'? Maybe just some media types with an axe to grind against Cogs? Not a nice guy....who cares! He doesn't get paid to be a nice guy. Seems like his teamates love and respect him. And it's been said before but obviously his teamates don't consider him using the 'n' word as a bad thing. Doesn't appear like it's done in a hateful manner to me. Seems to always be OK for blak gus to call eachother that but not white guys? What gives? Double standard? Different set of rules? But of course the media pins it and makes Cogs out to be a racist.

Seems the media AND Martin have agendas here, no?

DC @ 12:17....

I think you are on the right track...but I disagree with your interpertation of how Cogs uses the N word...and then hugs Pouncey...

It could be about control...like you scold your kid and then hug him after...

Perhaps he is making sure he and poincey are still cool...hugs solodify that...especially when alchol is involved....

Perhaps he was just showiung that he is the "pappy" of the locker room...

I am not a fan of the N word...I don't like it when blacks use it...and I sure as heck don't want a white guy using it within ear shot of me....sometimes people test others to see what they can get away with...

If Pouncey was the man many here think he is...that was the opertunity (among others) to put COGS on his @ss...its called a line in the sand...

I would have thought ONE of those players in this locker room would have had the intensital fortitude to do so...

but none do...."Knuckles" punked them all...

and it is his inconsistent nature...that we see up and down this locker room....and on games...'

When COGS sets the tone for the entire team...well...you see where we stand in the standings...



-Token Black, South Park

I could give a rats a** abotu any of this Richie/Jonathan stuff. Richies a pyscho and Jonathans a pu**y. I hate that the Dolphins are always in limbo with Ross as the owner. First its the coaching hire, then the GM saga, this team never gets a chance to move ahead and get better. I don't care if they fire the whole front office and every coach and I don't care of they keep all of them but SAY SOMETHING and then DO IT. So the players and fans can move on and put this behind us. WIN SOME GAMES.

It's clear to me that Martin's done in Miami. Not only is he not a good player, he doesn't it in. Ig whiff drafting this guy. Chop him this offseason and move on. This isn't a guy you can trust to ave your back when it matters.

I believe this same thing came out about Eminem...I may be recalling it incorrectly but everyone knew where he grew up and who his crew was. I think he used the N-word in an early rap and it got out. I believe he said he regretted doing it but you know he did it because he got a pass and was comfortable with his crew and they gave him a pass. He chose never to use it again and then somebody Jonathin Martined him and it became an issue. LOL

Michael Vick was welcomed back to the league after torturing and killing puppies. And laughing on a BroVoicemail is worse how?

drsammi @12:42

I tried to discuss this with my wife last night but she cut me off with a swift, 'ngger please'.

Posted by: Kris | November 06, 2013 at 12:45 PM

Nobody gives a shyt about what word(s) you think should or should not be used...especially a bunch of grown men that can determine for themselves in their locker room what can fly with whats being said... Again...your opinnion on whether a certain word shoud be used or not is 100% irrelevant...

I just read an article about Martin from his High School coach. He played for Jim Harbaugh at Stanford for 4 years and he's one tough coach. Why hasn't anyone asked him for his opinion? Shoddy reporting and investigating! Seems like all these sports writers do is watch and report on ESPN reports. And blind the facts with the N-word comments and worthless comments from ex players who woulda, coulda, shoulda done something

Armando--"how is this possible"?.....I've said it 15 times here recently....you/me/normal people, dont understand their world, their locker room....how they interact, whats acceptable, etc--OUR world is totally different than their world--but you and many other "normal people" dont seem to get that...."normal people/media/the public" are outraged....but nfl players, largely, are not--but who are we to judge "their world"?--accept that there is a disconnect, that we dont understand it--but we dont have to, thats the reality--media/fans/public...move on

I work with all Hispanics and they except me as a piasa along with them. I learned spanish from them and work aling side them. They call me all kinds of names as do I call them names. This Martin guy sounds like an oscar myer wiener

Posted by: ExposingTheFraud | November 06, 2013 at 12:51 PM

I tried to talk to your wife about it too but she couldn't get the D out of her mouth long enough to actually say anything understandable...

Armando, why are you bringing race into this...

Who cares how black, tough, or mean an OL is... can they run and pass block should be all that matters.

Teams used to draft OL for their brains and braun. The best OL were always considered the Smartest players on the team.. They have to know the entire offense blocking schemes, defensive blitz packages, etc.

Hell half the 49ers OL in the 80's and 90's went to law school.

The way the Offensive Line has played to date is due to the breakdown in coaching and players lack of focus.

My opinion only... this falls entirely on the Dolphins coaching staff.

P.S. at some point the Dolphins need to prepare for Monday night.

ETF, hate the word...gotta say...I laughed a little on taht one.

Kris, that could be the case, but after 10 years, you would think in a black-dominated sport like football, Cogs prejudice would have come out before this. While my view of Pouncey has diminished after this whole fiasco, I'm not ready to say he would just lay down and accept Cogs being the "pappy." I'd like to think he would stand up.

But who really knows at this point. Maybe your view is correct.

Jack!10.6 @ 12:56

You drew first blood yo, remember what goes around goes around.

Posted by: ExposingTheFraud | November 06, 2013 at 12:22 PM

i agree, i called this last week... reports of him not wanting to play..
parents are lawyers, they would know how to create a case
pulled the same prank on another team member the week before and then flipped out when it was pulled on him, then goes straight to the hospital for emotional issues. As i think instructed by his parents and agent.
He texts cogs to say he doesnt balme the guys so he can say he was afraid of retaliation.
loses his job again at LT when they traded for McKinney which i think pushed him over the edge.
I think hes doing it to get out of football and insuring he gets paid

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 »

The comments to this entry are closed.