Posted November 15, 2013

Jonathan Martin after meeting with NFL: ‘I do not intend to discuss this publicly’

AFC East, Miami Dolphins
Jonathan Martin, Dolphins

Jonathan Martin revealed little in his first comments in two weeks. (Joel Auerbach/Getty)

Jonathan Martin ended his nearly two-week public silence on Friday, but anyone hoping the Dolphins lineman would further explain his controversial bullying claim against teammate Richie Incognito will have to keep waiting.

“I do not intend to discuss this matter publicly at this time,” Martin said, according to FOX Sports’ Mike Garafolo, after meeting with NFL special investigator Ted Wells in New York. “This is the right way to handle this matter.”

Martin and lawyer David Cornwell arrived at Wells’ office on Friday morning. Martin’s brief statement came several hours later, with no additional information provided on how that meeting unfolded.

The 23-year-old Martin walked out of the Dolphins’ practice facility on Oct. 28, three days before his team was to play Cincinnati. Incognito was suspended the following Sunday, with the team announcing that it needed to further investigate Martin’s claims.

Incognito filed a grievance against the Dolphins on Thursday, citing a violation of the league’s CBA in his indefinite suspension. On Sunday, FOX aired an interview Incognito granted to Jay Glazer, in which he attempted to defend his actions.

“This isn’t an issue about bullying,” Incognito said. “This is an issue of my and John’s relationship. You can ask anybody in the Miami Dolphins locker room, ‘Who had John Martin’s back the absolute most?’ and they’ll undoubtedly tell you [that it was] me. All this stuff coming out … it speaks to the culture of our locker room. It speaks to the culture of our closeness. It speaks to the culture of our brotherhood. The racism, the bad words … that’s what I regret most, but that is a product of the environment, and that’s something we use all the time.”

Meanwhile, Dolphins owner Stephen Ross said prior to Miami’s game against Tampa Bay on Monday that he was “appalled” by the allegations levied against Incognito, and that he planned to meet with Martin.

“We have been careful in our statements and in our comments, as we have not wanted to make a rush to judgment until we know all of the facts,” Ross said in his statement. “We still don’t have a full picture of the facts. However, I want to be clear, that I and the Miami Dolphins organization are committed to getting to the bottom of this issue and making any necessary changes to improve our organization.”

The Dolphins have yet to place Martin on the reserve/non-football injury list, but he does not appear anywhere close to returning to the field, especially with Miami. Incognito’s suspension remains intact — he may be just as unlikely to ever suit up for the Dolphins again.

43 comments
Jeff63
Jeff63

" I do not intend to discuss this publicly"   Where was that philosophy 3 weeks ago, titbaby?

inthepresent
inthepresent

"All this stuff coming out … it speaks to the culture of our locker room. It speaks to the culture of our closeness. It speaks to the culture of our brotherhood. The racism, the bad words … that’s what I regret most, but that is a product of the environment, and that’s something we use all the time.”


this is the kind of quote, that unless it was entirely scripted (and i doubt incognito is capable of memorizing a line like that) speaks volumes about what really happened. 

i don't doubt the accounts of what was said (texted etc.), but i do doubt the veracity of the claims of this being as one-sided as they're making it out to be.

in all likelihood, they both threw the ---- around for quite some time. then it crossed some line(s) that Martin was no longer comfortable with. instead of telling incognito in a personal meeting that he wasn't ok with it any more, he chose to go public with it. 

he had that right, and the rest of the league (past and present players included) and the public have a right to their opinion as well. 

but i'm pretty tired with the notion that it was one-sided. it's pretty obvious that it wasn't. 

this doesn't make incognito a saint. he's very far from it, and has offered incontrovertible proof of that point more times than necessary. but it does say that there was another side to this story. one that we don't know yet.  

RaymondSmith
RaymondSmith

In the immortal words of Steven Tyler - Thughhhhh thughhhh dude looks like a lady. What a p*****y

sk01
sk01

This is classic workplace bullying. Pretending to be the victim's friend is "How to Bully 101" (see Megan Meier case). Potential victims will reveal personal weaknesses (ammunition for later attack) to the bully who pretends to be a friend. It also confuses the victim. Friends don't hurt one another and this reduces the chance that the victim will report. Pretending to be a friend also protects against possible defenders. In society, people don't intervene in spats between friends. 

Bullying is higher in pseudo-military organizations, workplaces that have a rigid hierarchy. And is more likely to occur against newcomers because they are still learning social norms of how to behave in the organization and people will not believe them if they report. In terms of team management. This is serious business. You can't build a cohesive team when people are abusing one another. You can't watch your back and compete against another team at the same time, or at least you can't do it well.

Janine
Janine

Its good that the NFL is cracking down on unlawful bullying in the workplace.  This young man should not be demonized for coming forward and exposing this cancer, he is a true HERO.  

thebigdawg3
thebigdawg3

Shocking that Martin's parents specialize in workplace law!  Shocking.  Hmmmmm … how can we make more money?  Let's sue the NFL.  The next thing we'll be hearing is Martin was hazed during his meeting with the NFL investigator.  Jonathan Martin and his parents are the lowest of low life people.

teds61
teds61

Put incognito next to ray "i'll turn on my homies cuz they killed them" lewis in the ESPN booth. What rhetoric we'd be in for. Plus their theme song could be ebony and ivory.

beast
beast

He was bent over. AGAIN!

theevilhour
theevilhour

Dolphin's new locker room rule: Nobody shall leave lunch the table after Martin sits down.

me1
me1

I've said it over and over...this is a job. Any employee that feels another employee that has been given a supervisory role, utilizes that position to degrade one employee and not another, and if that is found out to be true, is in violation of the harassment laws, EVEN in a state like Florida which is an "At will employment" state. It is open and shut. It does not matter if it was commonplace. It does not matter if it was in jest. It does not matter if it was meant to build brotherhood...it is still 100% illegal in the eyes of the law. Incognito admitted he did it...his justifications do not invalidate the law.

theevilhour
theevilhour

"Not to speak publically at this time" except for leaking all these texts and details under the table? I guess he considers it the "right way" of doing things. 

thebigdawg3
thebigdawg3

I've never seen a bigger loser in my life than Martin.  Made me want to puke listening to his canned speech after his meeting.  What a jerk.

Rickapolis
Rickapolis

Martin continues to show more class than anyone else involved in this disgraceful episode. The fact that some NFL teams see his behavior as weakness is indicative of what is happened to the NFL. 

Incognito should be banned for life. And I would have Martin on my team in a heartbeat.

StevenYaniz
StevenYaniz

I can't understand how this is still considered bullying after 1142 text messages shared between the two players has been made available thru FOX Sports. Although I am sure the messages are vulgar and filled with jughead racist lingo, no one has made mention of any other threats made against Martin. There's also the allegation that some player physically assaulted him during his time with the Dolphins, yet no one has been charged or suspended and not one of the 53 others on the team has stepped forward to point a finger. 

I say activate Incognito while the NFL performs their investigation and cut your ties now with Martin who will never play again anyway. 

FunFromDayOne
FunFromDayOne

@Janine youre correct Janine.. unfortunately you can't say the truth on this site full of monsters.. if it was their son it'd be a diff story.. dopes

inthepresent
inthepresent

@me1 if it were a dispassionate discussion on workplace law that people were having, i would be inclined to agree with you, but it's more of an emotional discussion at this point - as evidenced by almost all of the comments. and that is where it does (italicized) matter about the issues you brought up, such as "commonplace" and jest and brotherhood, etc. 

i don't think that what incognito did was right, nor do i condone bullying of any sort, but i do take issue with people's not recognizing that this workplace is nothing remotely akin to the ones they envision and as such are hardly subject to the same knee-jerk emotional responses that dominate the comment sections.   

Rickapolis
Rickapolis

@thebigdawg3  Why aren't you ashamed to write such imbecilities? You are only embarrassing yourself.

ImmaFubared
ImmaFubared

@thebigdawg3 Both his parents are lawyers specializing in workplace harrassment. Gee nice press for both of them too in case they were looking to make a bigger name for themselves????? 

jim5car
jim5car

@thebigdawg3 :  A man who drew line and stood up for himself, knowing his position would be unpopular.  No, you wouldn't understand - go back to slapping your wife...

inthepresent
inthepresent

@Rickapolis   "...is indicative of what is (sic) happened to the NFL."

 you're implying that the NFL of old was different. 

while i don't condone what incognito did (he's a jerk), i would ask you to substantiate that allegation to any meaningful degree. 

it seems that many of the ex-NFL-ers interviewed don't support your assertion.    

Water-Faery
Water-Faery

@StevenYaniz Yet another lunk of caveman who doesn't understand that abuse and violence NEVER solve anything and the "real men" do not use either abuse or violence to deal with other people.  

CarlLegg
CarlLegg

@StevenYaniz   1142 text messages made available? Where? In reality, only one text message was "made available" from Incognito. What wasn't widely known was the context of that "I'll kill your parents" message. Looks like it's not what it seems.

You say "activate Incognito"? That's not how we handle investigations, pork chop. The player accused of impropriety is relieved of duty while the investigation is active. After a finding is reached, the NFL and team advise the player of their decision. 

In this case, Incognito will never play with the Dolphins again, and probably never in the NFL. His ugly past has finally caught up with him. Maybe he can get a color commentary spot at FOX?

sam93505
sam93505

@StevenYaniz well, if it was on FOX, it has to be true, right? Get a grip- if they were legit, the other networks would be running them too...

evetsyarsh
evetsyarsh

@StevenYaniz Why would any other player come forward and get the public disdain that martin is getting? Even if they wanted to, that's a hell of a lot of pressure, and maybe even the end of their career.

Women in Domestic violence situation stay because they don't get public support, or out of fear. This doesn't mean bad things aren't happening.

sarteestmd
sarteestmd

@StevenYaniz I believe you should listen to the words of Shannon Sharpe. He pointed out that the N word should never be used, that too many blacks have climbed too far, suffered too much, to throw such a word around an NFL locker room. That other Miami players claiming Incognito was an honorary black was nonsense. That Martin went along with it is common for a victim to play along. But very importantly, Sharpe said that some 70-80% of the Dolphins locker room is black, and if they allowed that type of rhetoric to go on, it tells Sharpe everything he needs to know about that locker room. There is no leader in that locker room, which is one of their problems. Guys like Brees, Tom Brady, Champ Bailey, Peyton Manning, Jerry Rice, Jim Brown...any white/black NFL football leader, would not have tolerated a locker room like the one Martin faced in Miami. Never.

MidwestGolfFan
MidwestGolfFan

@StevenYaniz

Four comments -- and only four, ever, at SI -- all on this one subject.  Very curious, especially since all four are strongly, even stridently, pro-Incognito.

You got an agenda, or is Richie I. paying you?

Water-Faery
Water-Faery

@RaymondSmith @sk01 And THAT is a smart, responsible, non-abusive response . . .good grief.  Perhaps you might have some anger management issues?!

MidwestGolfFan
MidwestGolfFan

@sam93505 @StevenYaniz  

People like you like a whole lot of other networks:  CNN, MSNBC, CBS, NBC, ABC...

Fox is just one network.  And you can't leave them alone.  

"You can't handle the truth."

sarteestmd
sarteestmd

@evetsyarsh @StevenYaniz Exactly. Victims often remain silent, often play along even though deep down inside, they hate it, they hate their tormentor, and they hate themselves.


mkd09
mkd09

@sarteestmd @StevenYaniz Agree with your comment and concur with the words of Shannon Sharpe but, unfortunately, using the "n-word" is contextual and use far too frequently in pop culture.  Nobody, of any color, should use that word or any racist epithet.  This is one topic I really wish Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton would exhibit leadership about.

Rickapolis
Rickapolis

@MidwestGolfFan @StevenYaniz I've noticed that phenomena frequently with controversial stories. When the article about abuse at the Oklahoma State football program came out there were a bunch of brand new commenters attacking the writers, the sources etc. I had to wonder where they came from. 

MidwestGolfFan
MidwestGolfFan

@beast @jim5car @thebigdawg3  

You say "Be a MAN!  Stand up for yourself!"  According to you, that would make the problem go away -- tough-guys (like YOU, it's implied) respect when people stand up to them.

A lot of people disagree with you.  In other words, they "stand up to you" on these forums.  Granted, there's no real confrontation, but they're not just rolling over.  Not only do you not respect their opinion, your posts get more heated and nastier.

Martin was supposed to stand up to a whole mob of guys like you?  Wouldn't work.  Your behavior on SI forums proves it.


CarlLegg
CarlLegg

@beast @jim5car @thebigdawg3  

In fact, he stood up for the entire NFL and said "enough childish bull s*it".

Real men don't act like 13 year old gansta wannabes. The NFL players, whether they like it or not, are in the public eye. Time to start maturing a little bit. Martin had the courage to expose this crap to the world. Time for football to grow up.

MidwestGolfFan
MidwestGolfFan

@sarteestmd @evetsyarsh @StevenYaniz  

In an abusive workplace environment, the individual is usually just plain STUCK.  They just have to get along as best as they can.  

It's impossible to fix because the people in charge are either indifferent or actively abetting the culture.  Standing up to the tormentors doesn't work -- the victim is branded as disrespectful or arrogant, making things worse.  

Example:  the earlier back-and-forth about this subject in various other posts.  Many commenters say, "Stand up like a man, Martin!  That's how it works in MY world!"  But let someone disagree with them (i.e., stand up to them), and the become angrier, meaner and nastier.  And that's with nothing real-world at stake for the participants. 

MidwestGolfFan
MidwestGolfFan

@Rickapolis @MidwestGolfFan @StevenYaniz  

Yep.  

The pro-Tiger Woods crowd at Golf.com is especially notable whenever something controversial, or even just less-than-worshipful, appears about their hero.  

People appear out of nowhere, make a few posts -- often just one -- extolling TW and condemning (often savagely) anyone who disagrees.  Then they disappear forever.