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The future for Incognito and Martin

The much anticipated Ted Wells report that will put to rest the nightmare that followed the Dolphins for the better part of a month during the 2013 season will be delivered to the NFL either late this week or early next week. The assumption is the NFL will release the report soon afterward.

And while much has been reported (and misreported) about this whole affair, what I have been reporting for months is certain: Neither Richie Incognito nor Jonathan Martin, the principals in the scandal that rocked the Dolphins franchise, will ever play for the Dolphins again.

And that deserves investigating because all is not exactly as it seems:

It will seem, on the surface, that Incognito will never play for Miami again because the Dolphins are moving in a new direction on the offensive line and their former left guard is a free agent about to hit the market.

The truth is the week after the scandal broke, The Miami Herald reported Incognito was "done" with the Dolphins. That seems obvious now in hindsight but when it came out, several media outlets contested the report.

At any rate, the question today is not whether Incognito will return to Miami. It's not even whether he'll be able to return to the NFL. As The Herald also reported on Dec. 11, Incognito agreed to be suspended for the entire rest of 2013 (with pay) possibly in return for not losing 2014 playing time.

And this is where we begin to dig because, well, Incognito is a good player. He has a history in Miami that includes the golf course assault of a female greens volunteer. He obviously had previous issues he's addressed before arriving in Miami.

But did I mention he's a good player?

That's the thing. That's always the thing in the NFL. Players who can play can find jobs in the NFL. Barring prison stays, even guys who have off-field troubles but have on-field gifts get opportunities in the NFL. 

And that's Incognito. He's got demons he must address. But he's not in jail and he can play. Voila!

He'll be on a team in 2014.

So what can happen with him? Some team will undoubtedly sign him as a free agent. If I were a general manager and needed a relatively cheap ($3-$4 million) guard, Incognito would be on my list. But ...

I would only do it on a short-term basis. No way I give Incognito a four- or five-year contract.

One year for me. Two years max and even then I'm uncomfortable.

Why?

Because for whatever issues Incognito has beaten in the past and whatever failings he had with the Dolphins, he is usually a smart guy when he's on his meds. And he knows that he must be on his best behavior with his next team.

And he probably will be watching every p and q he texts teammates from now on -- at least for one year.

This isn't a new dynamic, by the way. Plenty of problem children have found a year or two of peace in new surroundings while they try to prove to the media, fans, coaches and mostly other GMs holding purse strings, that they can be trusted.

Folks like Randy Moss or Terrell Owens often had banner seasons the first or even second year with new teams. But give them a long-term deal and they get comfortable. Pay them and they start to feel entitled again. Commit to them and the old habits resurface. They blow up teams.

The way to manage players like that is keep them on a prove-it basis.

And it usually works for everyone. The team gets the player's best because he is motivated to get paid in his next one- or multi-year contract. The player obviously puts his best work on tape because, again, he wants to get paid next year.

Unless I miss my guess or there is a seriously trusting GM out there, that's the kind of deal Incognito will find waiting for him in free agency.

And then there's Jonathan Martin.

The common thinking here is the Dolphins will keep him on the roster until they can find a suitable trade partner that won't totally take them to the cleaners. I understand the logic. The team paid a second-round pick for him so it would be good to get something in return for him.

I have an alternate idea. No, not bringing him back to the team.

The Dolphins should simply waive Jonathan Martin. Good-bye. Godspeed. Lesson learned for everyone. Let's start a new day. Let's turn the final page on that chapter. Let's enjoy the game of inches and embrace all the cliched metaphors for fresh starts and simply cut Martin loose.

Why such a move, you ask?

Because unless new GM Dennis Hickey is a man gifted with the ability to perform the Jedi mind trick, no other team is going to really give him anything of significance for Martin because everyone knows the Dolphins want to get rid of him. It also didn't help owner Stephen Ross said as much in a press conference.

And even if some team is willing to give a seventh or perhaps even a sixth-round pick for Martin, the negotiation process is going to take a while.

And Martin will remain on the roster during that time.

I argue the value of cutting Martin swiftly and sending a message to the rest of the players in the Dolphins locker room -- who incidentally do not like Martin too much -- brings more value than peddling him like a medieval beggar trying to barter for food scraps.

Cut him. Give him what he most wants, which is his freedom. But gain, in the process, the franchise's freedom to move forward.

(Peanut gallery: But Mando, that would hurt the Dolphins cap. You don't know anything about handling a roster. Come to think of it, you don't know anything about football.)

Yes gallery, I am actually aware the NFL operates under a salary cap. Thanks for that. I am also aware the move I propose is almost cap neutral. Cutting Martin would cost the Dolphins approximately $957,734 in dead money if done immediately, less if designated for after June 1. But that total pinch would be mitigated by the fact the Dolphins would not pay Martin his $824,933 base salary for 2014. So the actual cap hit would be $132,801.

For that pittance, the Dolphins would break the chains of this story dragging on while they shop Martin. Hickey would be free of pundits saying his first significant move was getting taken in a trade. And did I mention it would give the team a reset?

Resets are good sometimes. While the conditions are different, the New England Patriots reset quickly when Aaron Hernandez went all Al Capone on society. They didn't keep him around to wait for the legal system to decide his fate. They cut his posterior immediately. They separated themselves from an ugly situation.

No, Martin does not represent an ugly criminal situation. There is a sizeable portion of the population that sees him as the one and only victim in this drama. I get that.

So fine, let's reward him for his anguish. Cut him. Allow him to be free.

And, more importantly, allow the Dolphins to move forward.

Comments

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HoHo!

Cog's should sue Martin for deformation, cogs already lost $900,000 for the 2 unpaid games and will lose millions on his new contract.

It wouldnt hurt to sign Incognito for another year being that we need 4 new O lineman.
NOW WHAT NFL? The locker room does stick together.

Really, on complete, good Teams, Cogs would be a good backup, Martin a fair one but with more upside. That's it.

My vision on these 2 characters. Cogs will probably never play on another NFL Team. Martin will probably hang on with a West Coast Team like SF, Seattle, for a while, then he will go to graduate School and resume his studies. That's it.

Oma-haaaaaw!!!!!!

How sad that in the 21st century there are still so many narrow minded, bigots, machistas, insecure, and morronics that would never accept change, or people for who they are. They should all move together on an island far away from society, and please dont forget your bone clubs.

When Incognito was suspended Miami's O-Line played much better. Imo not a huge loss.

I have been reading your prose for quite a few years now Mando and your post on the Incognito-Martin situation Jan 29th showed some intestinal fortitude. It was probably the one I enjoyed most.
Jonathan Martin is at best a mediocre talent and a locker room risk. Unfortunately we are unlikely to get much or anything for him anyway so cutting him now is Miami's best option now.
BTW When is the last time we drafted a player in the second round that panned out for us?

Dashi 6'1 250 isnt small. Porter was 6'3 255 and he did ok till his knees went. Our ends will cover the tackles to let that kid Sam go.And he is hulk like strong. If ray lewis could handle guards ,this kid is strong enough to get by as an olb.only thing,like you said,is his agility to move around when a tackle beats our guys.

Posted by: Sammo | February 11, 2014 at 12:43 AM

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Sammo,

6'1" 250lbs is small for a DE. It is even small for a OLB in a 3-4. Even small as an OLB in a 4-3. 6'1" 250lbs is ideal for a MLB.

You and I don't know how strong he is until we see his bench. On film he doesn't use his strength to bull doze linemen. He uses his speed to get around them.

But that is only part of it. Like you said his agility and cover skills better checkout. He better run like the wind and stick like glue.Doubt it.

Also, I would rather put O.Vernon or D.Jordan at OLB than Mr.LB.

He is the new flavor of the day.

The guy is smaller than any of our LBs. And our LBs have been playing the position for a while.

Better LBs in the Draft. Give me C.Jones from FSU. Or Skov from Stanford. Or the LB from Wisconsin, Kuechly Jr.

The kid will have to learn a whole new position in the NFL.

His college coach knows the Dolphins aren't a good locker room for him, BECAUSE HE WILL NOT SEE THE LIGHT OF DAY WITH THE DEPTH WE HAVE AT DE. HE WOULD BE CUT IN CAMP IF HE CAME DOWN HERE.

I like what his QB said, I accept him doesn't mean I have to support him.

James Franklin QB, he is a better prospect for the fins and could be had in the late rounds. He injured his arm against Georgia but should be healthy now.

Also, Mike Sam had most of his sacks in 3 games. The other 10 he was a mediocre player.

Agree that they will be both leaving Miami and thank goodness for that. Both contributed to a horrible OLINE and both contributed to the biggest distraction in this franchise''s history. I could care less about either one of them at this point.

Martin has little to no trade value and moving on swiftly is the right thing to do. Just like moving switftly in FA to find competent OLINE replacements will be the right thing to do. All I want Hickey thinking about is who he wants to sign in FA and who he wants to draft. We don't need him spending any mental energy on these two disappointments.

Incognito was a good player. He hasn't been a good player for the last 2 years.

Cogs = Cancer in the locker room.

Nightmare?

That was a dream scenario for you guys covering the Dolphins. You guys were working overtime that whole month. Said a bunch of stuff that was made up. And destroyed Incognito in the public eye.

ALL YOU GUYS HAVE BEEN PROVEN WRONG!! AND NOT ONE OF YOU HAS GIVEN AN APOLOGY. (must be nice to work for The National Enquirer)

Most the fans on this blog realized quick what this was. J.Martin was trying to scheme his way out.

Admit it. The Peanut Gallery was right on this one.

You know how much better you would've looked if instead of going with the crowd you stood up for what was right. You could've stood on your high horse with your napoleon complex and told O.Kelly and them I told you so.

When Incognito was suspended that line got beat down.
Even by the Pats D line.

STOP LYING TO PEOPLE MATT!

I wouldnt cut Marin. F' him, you want to play football, yeah right? I would keep him on roster and make Jmart quit again, if we cut him he gets what he wants "The easy way out"

Bring them both back. The fiasco they create will finally wake up Ross and he can then fire the entire front office and we can start anew.

The front office including the head coach

Why the heck would you give him what he wanted all along?? Don't reward his behavior. Make him gut it out, come to camp and look those same teammates in the eye that he walked out on. He'll end up quiting because he is soft. Don't reward his behavior.

I agree with Rdubs. Keep him, make him quit.

The Phins would be lucky to get a Ryan Leaf autographed football for Martin - they should just cut him.

Mass,


If you mean shankin' that Mofo when you said "just cut him" Then I agree

The Fins shouldn't cut J.Martin.

Expose him and his scheme. That Big Momma's Boy.

The only team on the West Coast that might play J.Martin is probably Oakland. 49ers and Seahawks will not pick J.Martin. They have way better linemen. And both run a power scheme.

Why do you think Jake Long left Miami for essentially the same money he got in St. Louis?

He was tired of Cogs's BS breaking up the chemistry of the O-Line

Long was the undisputed leader on the offensive unit, then the gangsta's of Pouncey & Cogs arrive and they disrupt the leadership of Long creating a our way or his way situation.

I blame Ireland 100% for failing to field an O-line that would bond with its established leader in Long.

Cogs was a nasty player with a history of disruption wherever he played, Ireland took a gamble and it failed....now he's unemployed along with Cogs & Martin.

Good riddance Jeffy...you should have been fired with Pizza Man, Tony Sparano.

Draft Sam and keep Martin. Room them together and direct Sam to get real, real "friendly" with Martin at every opportunity. Especially in the showers and in the middle of the night. Of course, it backfires if Martin actually likes it.

Actually New England didn't release Aaron when he went Capone on society - they released him when he got caught going Capone on society.

Going into the draft, the patriots knew Aaron had gangties adn drafted him anyway.

Cut the big baby martin and let him go live with his mommy so she can protect him from all the mean guys in the nfl.

Apparently Sam's agent thinks Sna Diego is an ideal fit. Sounds like someone wants to play rght next to manti!!!

They can go shopping and tanning together. Sounds beautiful.

Mark....Just like Pouncey had the same ties and Ireland drafted him anyway...Hence the "Free Hernandez" hat he wore.

I guess character does matter, but Pouncey has been a solid performer for our O-line and have no real issues with his on field character.

NH, Jeffy unemployed? He banked somewhere in the neighbourhood of $10M I'd imagine in his time in Miami. Don't feel sorry for jeff. And he will work many, many more years in the NFL.

Mike Pouncey, born and raised in Florida, had the same Connecticut gang ties Hernandez had from his pre college days? That's a nifty little jedi mind trick.

Land of the free, home of the...guilty by association? Must be a Black Eyed Peas remix. God they are terrible.

With all due respect to posters I appreciate (Rdubs, Dashi), the reasons you give for not wanting to cut Martin is amateurish and not well thought out. Basically, you want revenge. Unfortunately, you'd rather cut your nose to spite your face. I myself have no use for Martin. The players don't want him, the coaches don't want him, the owner doesn't even want him. The league KNOWS this, and thus unless you can somehow get a team to bite on a trade, then Mando's right, best thing to do is get rid of the cancer. Until this situation is FULLY neutralized, it will continue to hinder the team from moving forward.

Our sights should NOT be on Jonathan Martin. Our sights NEED to be on winning 9+ games this year and making the Playoffs. NOTHING should interfere with that goal. So cut the cord, scrape the name off the jersey, and give it to the next guy. And then the WHOLE SORTED EPISODE vanishes in our rear view mirror, exactly where it belongs, in the dustbin of history.

Get your gut out of it folks, this needs to be a sound business decision, and the most sense is to end this destructive relationship, before it swallows the team whole all over again.

Put him on the practice squad, for as long as he's under contract, to teach him a lesson.

I actually agree with this idea. Lets not waste any more time on this. Marshmallow anymore. Let's get rid of him and move on. Not the first team to miss on a second round pick. Happen inNew England all the time.

Maybe Martin can join Teo and Sam in San Diego and they hang out at spas together.

No DC!!! We should only focus on Jmart and only Jmart!!! I dont it will be a distraction for the GM. I think we can get a 7 for him, a good GM could get someone to trade for him. Grigson in Indy likes to trade away his picks for mediocre players. Obviously if there are no takers then you cut him. But you dont just give up before even trying. DC, do you remember the Jaguars only getting a 5th or 6th round pick for Eugene Monroe, afterwords other teams said they would have given them more if they knew he was available. We can get something for him, if it becomes a long drawn out process then just cut and run, but whats the problem with him having to sit around a little bit and worry about his career? Incognito has had to do that for months, because of this backstabbing phoney

Rdubs,

Who cares about a 7th.....how many of these guys work out? I don't want Hickey spending all his time on trying to squeeze SOMETHING from someone for Martin. I want him to figure out a way to get Grimes signed long-term, to figure out what to do with Starks/Soliai, how to spend our $30 million in cap money and how to have a stellar draft.

Priorities guys! There's only 24 hours each day. Use it wisely. Cut martin!! Send the message. More than. Half the teams won't want a quitter like this. He's note en. A good player. Cut his ass!

if he's on the practice squad, he's free for other teams to sign without compensation- so what's the point of that lesson again?

Jmart never steps foot in the Davie facility again...period.

Craig,


How much time do you think would be spent on trading Jmart? I say put out some feelers and then just sit on Jmart while you conduct your business. If no one steps up in time or you need the roster spot, then cut him at the last possible minute. I am not a vengeful person, but this kid needs to be uncomfortable for a while.

What is a 7th round pick? Jimmy Wilson..

Cut his candy @zz immediately!!!

I agree 100%. I think it would be a victory for the players in the locker room. Cut Martin azzz with all prejudice. If he was dumb enough to leave any of his shiznit in hid old locker in the training facility (you know? His Xanax , Thorazine, Prozac, collection of Asian dildo's and female underwear) .... Throw that shiznit out on the curb by the entrance facade and leave his agent (and everyone else in South, Florida) where he can come find it and get it off the property.

The only area methinks Miami should do differently the what Armando has already stated. Is I would resign Dark Richie right away. I'd give his a three year deal and I GUARANTEE if he is in great shape and plays at a high
Level he would become a fan favorite. You couldn't print enough "Dark Richie" jerseys. The guy would be a Miami folk hero. The only people who wouldn't dig Richie coming back to Miami are those who buy into ONE SHRED of that whole big, BS Martin story.

BRING BACK "DARK RICHIE"...... Then go find three more O-linemen JUST F-in like him.....

#bringbackdarkrichie

Incognito will get a life ban.

If I were in charge, I would leave Martin on the active roster and demand he show up to OTA's. If he doesn't show up; you then place him on the non-football injury list so you aren't forced to pay him...

IMO, he (along with his parents) devised this plan/scandal to force his way out of Miami. Why allow him to pull the necessary strings to get himself in SF with Harbaugh or Indy with Luck... Make him play out the contract he signed or suffer sitting at home not collecting a paycheck. At the end of the day, The Dolphins are not obligated to trade or release him...

In the trade market, what would you get for a soft, unmotivated, over-rated, Offensive Lineman who packed up his stuff and ran home after being demoted from LT to RT to Bench? I know the NFL will try to force Miami's hand, don't let Roger get his way...

Martin should be a productive RT for many years.

Obviously Pouncey was doing drugs with Incognito. This will launch a new investigation into these players and any other Dolphins involved.

Judith "Judy" Angela Jetson is the 16-year-old daughter of George and Jane Jetson who acts just like a normal teenage girl only with more futuristic tastes.

In 1985 she was convicted of the murder of James Goodyear. She was also convicted of multiple counts of grand theft, and is thought to have committed multiple acts of arson.

She was incarcerated in the Florida Department of Corrections Broward Correctional Institution death row for women, before being executed at the Florida State Prison in 1998.

This Ray Farmer promotion is gonna be very interesting. Now we will have a barometer to see what we have and what we could have had as far as GM's go. I find it strange that this change was made all of a sudden, why didnt this happen before they hired a new coach? I thought new GM's wanted to pick their own coaches? Does that only apply in Miami?

Martin's college coach, Harbaugh, said he'd like to have Martin on his 49ers.

I was one of the guys who thought COGS was drad wrong...amd that Martin was a victim...

doesn't much look that way now....

My best friend tried to enlighten me back when this whole thing was hot......

to keep it short....he said they were both a couple of modern day MIKE SAM's....

That of course is before we knew what a Mike Sam was....

Ireland should never have brought Incognito to the team. He's been kicked off EVERY team he's ever been on. This SHOULD'VE been a GIANT red flag.

Kris,


Now we cant stop hearing about the man with 2 first names!!!

Rdubs...

I know right....

When my friend was telling me....he made a LOT of sense...said that the whole thing seemed like a "bad break-up"...

I guess COGS knows now...that its "cheaper to keep" him

That of course is before we knew what a Mike Sam was....

Posted by: Kris (in Germany) | February 11, 2014 at 10:46 AM

----------------------------------

You mean a human being the same as you and me?

Kris,

I remember making jokes about Incgonito and Jmart being lovers during the earlier part of the scandal. I was kind of half joking. The way these guys talked about women almost comes across like they were trying to fight their true feelings. I read the text messages, they didnt offend me because I have a horrible sense of humor and relish inappropriate humor. I just think the thing that bothered me the most about the texts is they werent funny!!!

Cog's should sue Martin for deformation, cogs already lost $900,000 for the 2 unpaid games and will lose millions on his new contract.

Posted by: Marco | February 11, 2014 at 06:35 AM
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Marco is not a lawyer, but he plays one in his dreams. And in those dreams, apparently Martin deformed Cogs. What, did he slap him across the face with his pecker, breaking his nose and deforming it? Ohhhhhhh, that's right, you meant DEFAMATION! Marco, you seem lonely like me. Will you be my friend? I miss you already. :(

Anyone hear That Grimes wants to avoid the franchise tag?

Why do you think Jake Long left Miami for essentially the same money he got in St. Louis?

He was tired of Cogs's BS breaking up the chemistry of the O-Line

Posted by: NHFINSFAN

Actually, the story behind the story was that the biggest factor was actually Long and his wife not being happy in South Florida and not wanting to raise a family there. Both had a strong desire to return to the Midwest.

This has been reported numerous times.



E.O.R,


I would to if I was him, but I think he will be tagged. He should be signed to a long term deal, to help the cap this year. But to play dvil advocate, he has missed almost 2 full seasons due to injury?

Ross is already working on putting together a committee of folks to delve deeper into this whole bullying and harassment culture. He's tabbed experts such as former Oregon senator Bob Packwood, Supreme court judge Clarence Tomas, and Late Show TV host David Letterman.

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