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NFLPA in a delicate spot with Martin case


Even with the Dolphins and the NFL now reviewing the circumstances surrounding tackle Jonathan Martin’s departure from the team, the NFLPA isn’t investigating.

The NFLPA isn’t investigating because the NFLPA has no authority to impose discipline on anyone who may have been harassing Martin — and because the NFLPA eventually may be representing any player who is disciplined for harassing Martin.

As explained during Football Night in America, Martin’s camp has provided to the Dolphins evidence of harassment that Martin’s representatives believe goes beyond hazing, relating specifically to guard Richie Incognito (for now) and generally to the culture of the team.

It is believed by Martin’s camp that the Dolphins understand the seriousness of the situation, and that they will conduct a thorough review.

The union won’t be involved in the review because the union ultimately will be representing the interests of Incognito or any other player who could be disciplined by the Dolphins (for conduct detrimental to the team) or by the league (for, possibly, violation of the personal conduct policy).

The NFLPA nevertheless will monitor the situation, because just as it would have the duty to represent anyone disciplined by the league or the team, the NFLPA has a duty to protect Martin.

While it puts the NFLPA in a delicate spot, the same dynamic applies any time the rights of a member of a union potentially have been violated by another member of the union.

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44 Responses to “NFLPA in a delicate spot with Martin case”
  1. primenumber19 says: Nov 3, 2013 7:27 PM

    Aside from having an all time awesome last name, Richie Incognito will always be worthless.

  2. nfl4days says: Nov 3, 2013 7:28 PM

    Just get rid of Incognito. He sucks and all he does is cause trouble. This is crossing the line.

  3. thepftpoet says: Nov 3, 2013 7:29 PM

    Martin is a big baby

  4. La Milicia Negra says: Nov 3, 2013 7:32 PM

    well, no matter what, I assume its illegal to force/coerce people to pay for something they dont want to pay for..

    normally police would be a part of this, right?

  5. jlmd17 says: Nov 3, 2013 7:37 PM

    This needs to go full race card. C’mon media.

  6. thestrategyexpert says: Nov 3, 2013 7:38 PM

    Lawyers everywhere are firing up the popcorn.

  7. djstat says: Nov 3, 2013 7:41 PM

    If incognito is guilty. The nfl can make a huge system against bullying by suspending him for life…or banishing him to Jacksonville

  8. nikesparq says: Nov 3, 2013 7:42 PM

    Not sure how Richie Incognito won the “good guy” award when he is widely considered the most dirty player, and now most disliked player.

    I hope every team pounds this dude.

  9. beachsidejames says: Nov 3, 2013 7:43 PM

    We sometimes hear about fist fights between football players and then its over and you play the game of football. You have to be tough to be a football player. Martin is the one that sucks.

  10. jaxdolfan says: Nov 3, 2013 7:48 PM

    I am waiting to see if they somehow can tie in the name Redskins into this….oh and Gronk’s forearm.

  11. lbijake says: Nov 3, 2013 7:49 PM

    Incognito sounds like a real tool. Surprised one of the veterans didn’t help out and put Incognito in the proper frame of mind.

  12. seahawkgoat says: Nov 3, 2013 7:50 PM

    It’s Miami, not MiWAAAHHHHmi

  13. lbijake says: Nov 3, 2013 7:51 PM

    djstat says:

    or banishing him to Jacksonville

    That may be considered cruel and inhuman punishment.

  14. elchano says: Nov 3, 2013 7:53 PM

    Man. This is not kindergarten and a poor kid being bullied. Is a350 pounds guy, is I’m that size and somebody bully me I don’t run to my mama house, with the first right punch that guy will be sleeping for a week.

  15. annes22 says: Nov 3, 2013 7:58 PM

    Incognito is anything but a tool. If you play NFL football you need to be able to take what comes with it. Please this isn’t High School football. Someone needs to grow up here and behave like an adult.
    It’s pathetic that a locker room comes to this, and eventually the truth will come out. Right now the press and ESPN are guessing at what went on. They have no clue yet.

  16. lawyermalloy says: Nov 3, 2013 7:58 PM

    Like any National Union, when there is a conflict of interest, they stand down, allow the aggrieved members hire outside counsel, investigators etc. with the Union baring ALL costs.

  17. touchdownroddywhite says: Nov 3, 2013 7:59 PM

    Is Martin gay?

  18. 6ball says: Nov 3, 2013 8:06 PM


    From appearances it would seem the Dolphins O-line spends more time on hazing than practicing. They are not a very good unit.


  19. Foghorn The IKonoclast says: Nov 3, 2013 8:08 PM

    elchano, we do not care! I am not sure what this is really all about but it appears it might be more than hazing. Of course, we will get Bob Costas to opine, at which time I may be on your side of this debate.

  20. seahawkgoat says: Nov 3, 2013 8:08 PM

    touchdownroddywhite says:
    Nov 3, 2013 7:59 PM
    Is Martin gay?


    Without a doubt

  21. jlinatl says: Nov 3, 2013 8:09 PM

    I suspect the check is just the tip of the iceberg. Sticking someone with a check is a common “hazing” occurance at lots of companies. 30k obviously is obscene but getting stuck with a $2K or $3k dinner for a 1st or 2nd rounder isn’t harrassment in my mind. That’s part of the reason I think we’re going to hear much more.

    But reading between the lines, it seems like much more. Unfortunately, it seems like there are one or a few with players that don’t seem to understand what leadership is. More unfortunately, there seems to be a culture where the other players didn’t stand up for one of their own.

  22. calhounlambeau says: Nov 3, 2013 8:12 PM

    Picking on a gay player….Incognito is human trash.

  23. flickflint says: Nov 3, 2013 8:14 PM

    Story is different everyday. I don’t believe anything ppl are writing. Obviously no one knows what they’re talking about

  24. dean112263 says: Nov 3, 2013 8:15 PM

    Miami Herald is reporting that some rookies were brought to a “rookie night” dinner then stuck with a tab…$40k worth.

    One rookie stated that he is nearly broke because of this. Since that dinner is nearly as much as I make in 1 year, I kind of find it hard to wrap my head around this.

    But to be honest, if you have someone in the non-athletic work world try to do this it’s considered harrassment or even extortion (threats of reprisal of they don’t pay).

    Given the NFL’s guidelines, this is an issue that could cause some trouble with the Dolphins, and possibly some other teams if this brings others forward.

    Either way, I don’t see how this hazing does anything except to get some cheap S-O-B vets from picking up the tab on something they stick to a rookie.

  25. patricesw says: Nov 3, 2013 8:24 PM

    Dinner gate

  26. thegonz13 says: Nov 3, 2013 8:28 PM

    Just a thought here, but what’s the point in having a union? The harrasser gets represented and the harrasee doesn’t get the time of day…

  27. wryly1 says: Nov 3, 2013 8:29 PM

    Mike, I am shocked because you went to law school. You are factually and legally wrong. As a labor union, the NFLPA has no choice – none – but to uphold the labor laws that apply to every workplace in America – union or not.

  28. bradygirl12 says: Nov 3, 2013 8:31 PM

    No one should have to tolerate bullying or harassment in their workplace,and it doesn’t matter how big or how old that person is. We are all hard-wired differently. Bottom line, whoever is responsible needs to be disciplined by the team,which by the way,is not a very good one. Wonder why…

  29. elchano says: Nov 3, 2013 8:33 PM

    Another Ireland mistake, nobody check that this guy was not mentally strong to play this game.
    Nobody came with harassment issues , this is football , only for tough guys Dick Butks stile

  30. elchano says: Nov 3, 2013 8:49 PM

    Is any opening spot in the Lingerie league for a OL??

  31. davetrembley says: Nov 3, 2013 8:57 PM

    I think it is worth waiting to see specifically what the investigation finds. If there is evidence that Martin was harrassed, intimidated, or bullied, then whoever is responsible should be disciplined. I do not believe the onus is on Martin to “suck it up” or toughen up.

  32. davetrembley says: Nov 3, 2013 9:00 PM

    I want to see what the investigation finds.

  33. elchano says: Nov 3, 2013 9:08 PM

    Sorry but there is only one problem , and is J. Martin because if he had problem with other players the right move was a meeting with coach Piblin , a serious and correct guy , don’t ran to his mama house.
    Was not Saban the head coach, Martin did a wrong move

  34. NJ49er says: Nov 3, 2013 9:13 PM

    Your OLine can’t get it together as a unit and you wonder why Tannehill is a tackling dummy?

    Something stinks in the Miami Locker Room.

    This is hard to fathom when your OLine Unit can’t coexist.

    Adding McKinnie will at least provide them a professional party planner.

    Seems like playing football to win is just something they put on the locker room signage.

  35. pittsburgh84 says: Nov 3, 2013 9:18 PM

    This highlights the strange role of a “players union.”

    Unions were created to stand together against management (aka the team/league).

    But these players unions (specifically NFL and NHL) are made up of guys who want to hurt each other.

    In a matter like this it almost seems like the union should recuse itself.

  36. doggeatdogg says: Nov 3, 2013 9:23 PM

    @dean112263 —– I been reading the same on other sites. Old twits from players saying things like ‘the food taste better when the rookie pays for it’. Not so cute now. Imagine a bunch of vets taking a rookie to those super expensive restaurants in South Beach then sticking them with the bill. And don’t tell me this doesn’t happen in Chicago and Detroit, etc.??

    I knew there was going to be some hemming and hawing about this between the union and the NFL because it’s a huge pandora’s box with the name of all 32 teams on it. Every team has a Richie and every team has rookies with stories to tell.

  37. jwmnyg90 says: Nov 3, 2013 9:28 PM

    no way he had it tougher than Riley Cooper this summer.

  38. dretwann says: Nov 3, 2013 9:46 PM

    My guess, this dude is gay. If so, so goes the theory that now is the time to “come out” in the NFL. When the investigation is done, will be interesting to see the response from Goodell.

  39. 69finfan says: Nov 3, 2013 10:01 PM

    Dinner Gate: excellent comment!

  40. kisstherings says: Nov 3, 2013 10:31 PM

    And the king of over-exposing the lamest stories on earth……does it again. What’s the matter MF? The Redskins name storyline even starting to bore you to tears now?

  41. swaggerville1 says: Nov 3, 2013 11:08 PM

    The Dolphins have serious issues and this is why they continue to be NON factors in the NFL. The team has NO respect for themselves and I would suggest that coach Philbin has known about this stuff for a while. Is there not an OL coach? If coach Philbin was not aware, then he is totally out of touch with his team. Any wonder why they are 4-4 and headed for a 4-12 season.

    Ritchie Incognito is everything that the NFL’s paying fan-base does NOT want. I wonder what its gonna be like to be Ritchie, lining up against guys that are gonna wanna smash him real bad. Enjoy it dude you deserve whats coming.

  42. gbxbox says: Nov 4, 2013 12:10 AM

    I suspect the check is just the tip of the iceberg. Sticking someone with a check is a common “hazing” occurance at lots of companies. 30k obviously is obscene but getting stuck with a $2K or $3k dinner for a 1st or 2nd rounder isn’t harrassment in my mind. That’s part of the reason I think we’re going to hear much more.

    Agreed 100%. This is obviously about more than just a 15k trip. I have a feeling there has been some physical intimidation or something of that kind of severity (something that will be kept in house until an ex-player finally leaks it).

    I doubt the media will find out any time soon about it however. It seems to be being taken care of in house which is why there is the suspension by the team and not from the NFL.

    Hopefully they can come together as a team and try and put the disgrace that Incognito has brought to it. I used to like him as a player, but this is just something that is disgusting and reflects poorly not only against him, but against the team as well.

  43. MyTeamsAllStink says: Nov 4, 2013 12:18 AM

    Martin and Kwame Harris have a date tonight

  44. reddogdogred says: Nov 4, 2013 8:17 AM

    (seahawkgoat says: Nov 3, 2013 8:08 PM

    touchdownroddywhite says:
    Nov 3, 2013 7:59 PM
    Is Martin gay?


    Without a doubt)

    Are you two hoping and wishing?

    or perhaps you are hoping Incognito is and will try you two on for size?

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