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News and opinion on Jonathan Martin interview

First the news, although in this case there is precious little: In his interview with NBC, Dolphins offensive tackle Jonathan Martin claims when he became uncomfortable with what appears to be verbal abuse he told coaches "above me" of his discomfort but "didn't get into specifics because you're not supposed to quote unquote snitch on your teammates."

That suggests Martin told Dolphins offensive line Jim Turner of something going on but obviously was not specific.

Martin also confirmed he never talked to head coach Joe Philbin about his issue, which has been reported here multiple times and Philbin has claimed throughout.

"There was persistent comments of a racial nature, aggressive sexual comments related to my sister and my mother,'' Martin told Dungy in the interview, portions of which aired on NBC's TODAY Wednesday morning. "I’ve spoken to my former teammates in other locker rooms across the NFL and I asked them, does this stuff go on? Is this normal rooking hazing? The consensus was, this is not normal."

Martin claimed he had no issues with pranks (perhaps because he participated in those and pulled them on other teammates also) but said the verbal abuse was "personal."

 "I have no problem with the normal hazing that you see in the NFL," Martin said. "'Get a haircut,' stuff like that, little pranks. The personal attacking nature, I don’t think there’s any place for that."

That's it. That's the news. The full interview with NBC's Tony Dungy will be aired on NBC Network's PFT at 6:30 Wednesday.

Now my opinion ...

At the risk of sounding unsympathetic, Jon Martin, your weak act is officially old. Go away. Just do what you did best as an offensive lineman on the field and back away. Just do what you did when you left your teammates unexpectedly during the season and simply disappear.

Every single step taken by you in this saga feels manufactured and authored by a lawyer as a step toward a suit. And that makes sense because you definitely have gotten excellent legal advice from your family and the lawyer you added to represent you in this matter. And I, for one, would be surprised if your legal team isn't preparing a suit.

The dramatic throwing down of your lunch tray and departure? No other teammate did that when you were among the players standing up and leaving them alone at a lunch table. So the fact you chose that harmless act to make your departure statement seems contrived now.

Seeking medical help? Please tell us where exactly? Please provide the details of what you were treated for? Because it seems you had some issues you're not eager to share. Furthermore, my understanding of classic ambulance chaser strategy is he or she demands you get "medical treatment" so your coming lawsuit can show damage, thus giving the legal action more bite. Give details, please.

The well-timed and slow leaks of allegations of wrong-doing, all of them done anonymously by your camp? Classic. They slimed the parties you intended be slimed and it was done with plausible deniability that you had nothing to do with it. It's brilliant, actually, using a media hungry for a story to feed the narrative of Martin as victim. You did it through the national media, of course, because you wanted to get your "story" out to as many as possible as quickly as possible. But you also wanted to use that vehicle because the national media wasn't going to question your motives. The national media wasn't going to form an opinion that is politically incorrect. And the national media wasn't in the locker room the week before you left when you were stewing and clearly unhappy about getting moved from left tackle to right tackle -- which in hindsight seems like another reason you left the team.

And now this NBC interview? Timed, coincidentally of course, during Super Bowl week. It is the NFL's biggest attention grabbing week of the year. And so that's the week you pick to go public with your first interview. Because that's the week it will get noticed most.

Well, this interview so far, is a dud, big guy.

The most hurtful thing you can point to as reprehensible behavior by the Dolphins is verbal abuse. So where's the "physical attack" your lawyer claimed happened? Why not give details to that? Where's the evidence of code reds?

You mean to tell me the full extent of the "bullying" your camp has alleged comes down to a pattern of mean texts sent and mean and unfeeling insults uttered by your teammates about your race or your mom or your sister?

Are you 11 years old?

You went to Stanford. You know how to communicate. Why didn't you take your tormentors aside and tell them in no uncertain terms the verbal abuse had to stop? Why didn't you tell your head coach, who definitely would have stopped the abuse and done so in-house so as to not embarrass you, your teammates or the organization? And failing that, why didn't you make an open show of one of the abusers in a full-on locker room takedown that would have definitely gotten everyone's attention -- including your coaches -- and screamed something had to change?

(Sorry people, but sometimes a man has to be a man and defend himself and his honor with whatever tools are available. Yes, flight is one of those tools, but that one pretty much sealed Martin's fate in Miami. He'll never play on that team again. He had to know that.)

Another thing:

Please Tony Dungy, you're a nice man and a Christian. So where is your discernment in all this, my brother? So far this interview shows no moment where you ask Martin why at the height of his frustration he didn't simply get face to face with whomever was tormenting him and do what men have done since David faced down Goliath -- they stand up for themselves.

No, NBC would probably frown upon this line of questioning because it would fly counter to the politically correct demasculinization of men in the 21st century. But if Martin's response to the abuse was always to grin and bear it, or even join in the abuse of others to be part of the group, that speaks poorly of the abusers, no doubt, but it also shows how weak Martin is in a den of Alpha males.

Dungy, by the way, is part of Dolphins owner Stephen Ross's committee that will look into establishing a code of conduct in the locker room. That the Dolphins need such a committee speaks poorly of the coaching staff because it is their job to establish that code and make it clear to players in no uncertain terms. Discpline on the field is born off the field, folks.

Dungy should be removed from this committee because he no longer seems impartial.

One more thing:

None of this gets Richie Incognito off the hook. He's a meathead. He displays all the signs of a bully -- loud, obnoxious at times, demanding attention. He will not be and should not be in any future Dolphins locker room. His abuse of Martin and perhaps others within the Dolphins organization is reprehensible. And his text messages? Who talks like that? But because he's something of a bully, he can be stopped dead in his tracks.

Early in training camp in 2013 he started calling another reporter a "nerd." One day as I'm standing in the middle of the locker room, he walks by and starts joking about me looking like I was lifting weights (which I don't) and then started speaking gibberish as if in mocking Spanish.

I asked Incognito politely, but firmly and seriously to stop. "Just stop."

He did. Never again.


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Posted by: dolfan29 | January 30, 2014 at 01:41 PM

I hear you, but Ross did put some heat on Philbin to fire his old buddy. Philbin got Lazor, Im actually pleased with that one and I hope he can bring some of the Eagles success to this team.

If the D is as bad as last year, then Ross will be on Philbin for that at the end of the year. I worry that during the season Hickey won't do much to put pressure on Philbin to make changes. Thats why Iam saying Philbin is the main man now, with no Ireland in his way he has to come through this season. So far he has at least got Lazor.

No chance Mike Evans or Watkins get to #19. Neither will, Bridgewater, Manziel, the Clown man and Jake Matthews. OTs Robinson and Lewan neither. So you more or less start seeing our dilemma there.

So we have 9 Players of the top 20 ranked that might fall to us at #19. 7 of them are DEs or DTs. only 2 of them are O Players. Eric Ebron, TE and Marqis Lee, Wr. Take your pick. Both are impact Players.

What, you didn't like it either? I'm giving it to you all chewed out already.

Mondo , nice work.(on this one) I'll leave it at that.
You're baffling because sometimes you're right on, and then times when you go into attack mode. Like with Dawn A. You attack her mercilessly. It's just wrong. She's a motivated professional. If she had no passion, you'd attack her for that. You spew out crap, and these sheeple buy it. You're a predator.

For all you jaboronis who thought Jonathon Martin had trade value you are sadly mistaken. He was a bust pick. Barely a right tackle maybe a back up tackle in the league. So we went from getting what a fifth to nothing for him. I say good riddance to bad rubbish. Miami should do the right thing and reinstate Incognito, cut Martin and be done with him just like the gm that drafted him. So glad Ireland is gone. So glad.


Kudos Mando,

It takes guts to report like this and you have a decided opinion and using your Constitutional Rights to express them.

The whole Martin thing had a flim flam feel from the begining. His M.O. was to gain sympathy while bowing out on his team so that he could not further be exposed a as a 2nd round poser of an NFL OL.

I can't wait until he is in the rearview mirror of the Fins. If some team thinks they can make this guy into a player than more power to them.

The fact is the team improved when McKinnie and Undrafted Brenner came in. There is still much work to do on the OL but losing Martin is a huge start. I feel for Incognito as it seems his crazy talk got his tit in the ringer. Hopefully he will be able to find work with another team as he was a decent player. The team should be going for more athletic guys like Pouncey so they can add more diversity to the run plays with more movement ability up front.


This is why he left the team:


Very well said that is exactly how I feel. Martin is a girl I am 6'1 170 lbs and I could bully him smh... sorry but he needs a desk job. If he can not handle a locker room full of different kinds of personalities then he will not make it long in the NFL unless he has to be babied


Ur wasting ur time/breathe wit this Marco punk! Why u gonna try to man up wit someone who can't even spell?!?!?! Canadien? Bwahahahaha

Great Job Armando!

Mando I have been one of your readers for many years now and I can say without equivocation that you have never written a better article.


I am a former football player and presently a coach. I'm sorry, men don't send those type of graphic text messages to each other unless they have ben or are in some type of sadistic sexually deviant relationship. Just call it like it is!

Nice job this idiot has spit on the Miami Dolphins organization. He madeus diehard fans sick. ESPN made us sick when there Buffalo Bills loving head jumped at the chance of trying to disgrace our coach,the owner, players and lastly us fans. Little Johnny I hope you never play again you are full of crap all you did was make me love my team even more because we fans could see right through you. You would turn your back on your own brother. As far as Thrill goes I suggest you relook at some game tape Mr. Wallace dropped several TDs that only he could have caught because Thrill threw them perfectly. Remember the throw at the end of the Carolina Panthers game. Also watch Thrill throw perfect passes while on the run across his body in the other direction. The kid has the goods and next season I think all of his naysayers will eat their words. Looking forward to a fresh start new Gm offensive coordinator and a good assistant oil coach.

I have been reading this blog for over 10 yrs and have never made a comment in this section. Tt is more about entertainment and being kept up to date on my favorite teams news. I have to say though, this is perfect! Great write up and exactly on point with how I feel but could never have said so well! Thanks

Great piece! Best I have seen from you in some time. Be careful of what you say about Martin, you dont want him going back and telling his mommy on you too!

Excellent article. The one thing that sticks I my mind more than anything is that in ALMOST every situation of a player/players wrong doing, the coach and owner wait until someone is proven guilty to suspend the player. At times, the NFL even allows the player to finish the season before a witch hunt begins. Not with Richie. In this era of the NFL, if a white player is even suspected as a racist, other teammates will open up and tell reporters if he is or not. To have the entire locker room stand in his corner and defend him speaks volumes. There are/have been black players that have done worse only to hear players and coaches defend him saying it's his particular personality. It's written off as the right to "express" himself. If the NFL is so concerned about the use of certain words being used, then ban them for everyone. Cognito has many problems indeed. Players know at any level that sometimes it takes one brash, big mouthed guy to fire other players up. Just ask the men that played with Ray Ray. Does Richie go to far? I'd say so. But Martin had other choices than just blasting his teammates and the coaches then walking off. Left tackle is one of the top 3 positions to excel at. Growing up in S. Fla, I can tell those fans can be brutal. Been a long time since having a winner. Looks to me like he used Richie as a goat to blame for his inability to keep Ryan T on his feet. I wish him well. But I really feel for Richie. He gave everything he had and more. He made those around him play tough. He stuck up for his team. He was loyal. And he was better than people give him credit for. For anyone that remembers the name, he's a modern day Conrad Dobler.

Martin needs his ass beat and told to never come back. What a Madonna.

Martin. Sheesh, what a pussy!

way to go mando, jonathin martin makes my blood boil, even when people were defending him saying that being bullied is not always a physical but mental thing, i was enraged. like you said, this man graduated from stanford and acts like hes a damn 10 year old kid. i hope he gets whats coming to him, he sure made a mess out of things last year

Right on point MANDO! Hard to reply with more than that. In nearly every man denizen I've encountered where this drama is discussed (including inside my very own, very racially mixed semi-pro football "locker room"), the consensus is and has been exactly as you've eschewed here. As a sidebar context point, it is indeed true that in "mandom" busting each others stones about wives, girlfriends, moms and other topics in a similarly rough and extreme manner IS THE NORM, for better or worse. My mandom/locker room travels include several high schools sports teams, 2 college football programs,as well as baseball and track, 4 active years in the USMC and several years of semi-pro on 4 different teams... Thanks for calling BS on both Martin, his entire camp and the effeminizing world of political correctness.

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