In his Thursday night statement, lawyer David Cornwell said that Dolphins tackle Jonathan Martin will cooperate fully with the NFL’s investigation.
This obviously means Martin will meet with NFL investigator Ted Wells. According to the Associated Press, the meeting will occur late next week in Los Angeles.
This is a common occurrence in any situation involving alleged workplace misconduct. The investigator talks to all witnesses, reviews email messages or other electronic communications, and then follows up with witnesses as needed and, in many cases, expands the investigation based on information obtained.
In this specific case, the broader question is whether Wells will expand the investigation beyond the Miami locker room. Anecdotal evidence has flooded the media this week from current and former players talking about their own experiences with locker room hazing/bullying/harassment. And it’s widely expected that the ultimate outcome will entail changes that sweep well beyond South Florida.
So will Wells and the NFL go down the rabbit hole and explore how widespread the problem is? Or will the NFL and Wells plug the rabbit hole with cement (Bountygate-style), mete out discipline in Miami and only in Miami, and warn everyone else going forward that whatever has been happening in any other locker rooms needs to stop, or else.
Given that this entire episode will be playing out in the public eye — and that the report from Wells that will be made public — we’d be shocked if Wells ultimately issues a broad indictment of the culture of professional football.
Even if his investigation would suggest that such an indictment is warranted.