Martin will meet with Dolphins Wednesday, Ted Wells Friday

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In the past two days, some strange timing issues have arisen in connection with the Jonathan Martin case.  For starters, Dolphins owner Stephen Ross opted, after two weeks of silence (other than a brief statement acknowledging the appointment of an outside investigator) to conduct a press conference only a couple of hours before Monday night’s eventual loss to the Buccaneers.

Now, PFT has confirmed Ross will meet with Martin on Wednesday — two days before Martin is interviewed by NFL investigator Ted Wells.  (The news was first reported, as best we can tell, by Adam Schefter of ESPN.)

It’s odd that Martin would talk to Ross (and possibly other Dolphins executives) before meeting with Wells.  Regardless of the intended agenda for the meeting — and for all anyone knows part of the goal will be to negotiate a severance or at a minimum to lay the foundation for it — meeting with the Dolphins before meeting with the NFL’s investigator potentially will influence what Martin will say when he meets with Wells.

It’s likely that the Dolphins aren’t willing to let Martin leave the team without paying back all or part of the unearned portion of his signing bonus.  The meeting with Martin could, intentionally or not, entail the dangling of a carrot that his ability to walk away and keep his full $1.919 million signing bonus without a fight will be influenced by what he says and how he says it to Ted Wells.

The mere possibility that the Dolphins will say or do anything that could have an impact on the way Martin tells the truth to Wells (and there are many, many ways to legitimately tell the truth in situation like this) should prompt an immediate call from Wells to Ross and/or Commissioner Roger Goodell ordering the Dolphins to not meet with Martin and to have no further contact with Martin until Wells has a chance to meet with Martin and find out what he knows, unaffected by anything that Ross or anyone else from the team says to him.

Even if the meeting between the Dolphins and Martin occurs before Wells meets with Martin (and it shouldn’t), Martin should be advised by his representatives and lawyers to say as little as possible — and preferably nothing at all — regarding the things that did or didn’t happen to Martin.

Anything Martin says, in any setting and to any person, can be used against him later if/when the situation ends up in a court of law.  When Martin meets with Wells, Martin essentially will “lock in” to his story.  If he says anything to the Dolphins that conflicts in any material or immaterial way before that (or after it), the lawyers will explore using the inconsistency as proof that Martin wasn’t telling the truth in either or both settings.

The best way to avoid these issues would be for Wells to exercise the independence he supposedly possesses by calling the Dolphins right now and telling them not to meet with Martin at any time before Wells’ investigation ends.

20 responses to “Martin will meet with Dolphins Wednesday, Ted Wells Friday

  1. Ross is looking to CYA – his own. Martin’s lawyer Cornwall is in the driver’s seat. Richie doing what he should do a lot more of – remain incognito.

  2. If Martin is allowed by his legal team to meet with the Dolphins then the true intent will be obvious. He wants his money without having to play for the Dolphins. I blasted Incognito for his juvenile stupidity but from another angle, what Martin appears to be doing is far worse.

    If you take away Incognito’s history (which is not relevant to the allegations from Martin other than an indicator to the team that this kind of stuff could be possible) the actions of both men are identical. The accusations are that Incognito sent a vile message to Martin 8 months ago. True, but Martin sent a similar vile message to Incognito a couple weeks ago with no admonishment at all from those complaining about Incognito’s. Martin’s team says that he endured hazing from several teammates. Probably true, but his teammates have said that Martin participated in the same hazing of others. Incognito was suspended against his will (deservedly so when you account for the pattern of misbehavior) and will lose money. Martin quit on his team and expects to be paid more money, or allowed to keep the money as if he actually was still doing his job while being released from his responsibilities for earning said money. Sorry. That doesn’t fly. I’m probably in the minority here and will no doubt catch flack about blaming the victim. It’s obvious that not all the facts are in but from what I have seen, Martin is manipulating the system and the scapegoat he chose is the kind of guy the media and the general public love to hate. They found their bad guy and have stopped looking. Martin has manipulated the system and the facts to show he is a victim but it appears to me that this is about his inability to handle failure. He wanted an excuse and he found a plausible one if the facts are simply taken at face value. Further scrutiny shows the big picture much differently.

  3. Don’t presume that the meeting with the Dolphins isn’t what the NFL wants.

    A settlement prior that would limit the allegations is probably in the NFL’s best interest.

  4. I trust ted wells as far as I can throw him.

    That said… if you’re in trouble… he’s a good person to know.

  5. All this “bullying” and “locker room culture” smokescreen is leverage. IT is all about Martin getting paid. This has all been claculated by Martin’s mother who made her bones as a Employee Rights Attorney. Ross is the “deep pockets” who wants to avoid any more embarrassment to his team. Martin’s camp wanted this meeting. It is a shakedown.

  6. WOW! Talk about a slime ball. Ross is trying to keep Martin from telling the truth about the Dolphins organization. Can you say payoff. Pretty shady move on Ross’s part, to bad the whole country can see right through this BS!

  7. Or maybe Martin isn’t looking to get a cash settlement, and he doesn’t want to cause (more) problems for the team and Mr. Ross.

    And the NFL may have encouraged the meeting. I’m sure they want the story to go away and the national media, before someone uncovers that grown men on other teams may use vulgar language, go on expensive Vegas trips, end up with big dinner bills, and have position meetings at strip clubs. Allegedly.

  8. The NFL absolutely wants this handled as quickly, as quietly and as amicably as possible.

    The less made public about what went on in the Dolphins or any other locker room, the better for the NFL.

  9. Yeah I just don’t agree with Miami’s timing of decisions here. I think it was a deafening silence that deserved to be talked about openly and IMMEDIATELY as the situation unfolded. Taking your time to protect yourself by listening to lawyers and advisers that don’t themselves know how to run a football organization is just unnecessary. I’m not so sure that Ross doesn’t need to do a better job of cleaning out his legal team before he even gets started with cleaning up the football program. And then the press conference yesterday while I appreciate what he’s trying to do, he took too long to say something and what he said wasn’t sharp or strong enough and didn’t suffice for what he needed to say there if he’s going to talk at this juncture. I think there were some better choices of how he could have postured with that statement which showed him to appear to be a weak leader that needs other advisers now to keep him in check with himself. That just doesn’t sit well with me and then following it up with a loss to the Bucs was just the icing on the cake to say that these guys need serious help, but they need help from good football people who are coming from a good place. And Ross and the Dolphins just don’t have that right now.

    I appreciate all the sentiments in this article and there are some great points here, but I’m of the thinking that if this is my football team I’m not interested in waiting around for Ted Wells to complete his investigation before I conclude most of mine and make some efforts to restore the football health of the team. There’s too much to do and this is going way too slowly for how it needs to be handled. I think this isn’t as complicated as the Dolphins are making it by trying to do things according to some kind of process that the NFL has come up with, and that’s just not the optimal way to fix or address the problem.

  10. On Martin: “Anything Martin says, in any setting and to any person, can be used against him later if/when the situation ends up in a court of law.”

    On Incognito: “But there really isn’t an “ongoing legal situation,” other than Incognito’s suspension. If he was merely carrying out orders, he wouldn’t undermine his position by saying so — he’d help it.”

  11. Wow Jonathan Martin wants to be a free agent and keep the money, signing bonus etc… he hires a lawyer to that end.

    The locker room dialog that everyone uses, which includes the “N” word, causes emotional stress.

    What a noble young man this Stamford grad is.

  12. I think Martin couldn’t the pressure of the NFL and this was a way out with the possibility of being paid.

    Ross wants to listen to one side of the story and nothing from Incognito. How in the hell is that getting a perspective of what was going on? Martin is just as guilty of the vulgar messages and hazing pranks. Ross is an idiot when it comes to owning a football team; he might even be worse than Jerry.

  13. …and watching Ross’ press conference last night. What an uninteresting dolt of a person he is. It’s apparent why the Phins are in such a mess with this turd running the show. Ugh. He needs to sell the franchise quickly.

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