Marvin Lewis: Dolphins situation shows importance of leadership

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Bengals coach Marvin Lewis has weighed in on the Dolphins bullying scandal, saying that it shows the importance of leadership in a locker room.

Lewis noted that the bullying of Dolphins offensive lineman Jonathan Martin by teammates Richie Incognito, Mike Pouncey and John Jerry came to a head only after Jake Long left the Dolphins in free agency. Lewis believes a leader like Long would have told his teammates to knock it off before it reached the point where Martin left the team.

“The thing I thought was interesting is Jake Long,” Lewis said. “When he was a Miami Dolphin he was in charge, and so that didn’t go on to that extent. And so I think you have to have leadership in place throughout your team that understands, our focus here is to win football games, our focus is, if that’s our starting tackle, to have him feel as good about himself as he can feel every day. Because that’s a big strong man who has to block big strong men. And so you certainly don’t want to tear him down and expect him to go battle with us on Sunday — it just doesn’t work.”

Indeed, the Ted Wells report on the Dolphins bullying case notes that the absence of Long changed the dynamic within the locker room.

“During the 2012 season, Incognito and starting left tackle Jake Long functioned as the veteran leaders on the Dolphins’ offensive line,” the report says. “After Long signed with the Rams in 2013, Incognito and starting center Mike Pouncey, a third-year player, were regarded as the leaders of the offensive line, if not the entire offense.”

Incognito and Pouncey didn’t provide the kind of leadership the Dolphins needed. Perhaps Long would have.

40 responses to “Marvin Lewis: Dolphins situation shows importance of leadership

  1. Yeah that Jake Long is a pretty good player. Hey Jake don’t sign an extension with your team when your contract is up until you hear what the Bengals might offer to you. It sounds like they have targeted you as one of the really special players that also offers leadership qualities too. And I wonder what players on the Bengals Marvin Lewis is fond of. Maybe he will make a report on that when he’s done gushing about non-Bengals players.

  2. The importance of leadership on teams cannot be overstated. Positive team dynamics are critical to teams’ success.

    Because fans are not in the locker room or with the team we cannot know who the real leaders are and how effective they are.

    Letting a guy like Jake Long go was certainly all about the cap ($$$) and the leadership void created by his departure was either overlooked or ignored.

    Problem is teams cannot pick or make leaders so they need to be very smart about their team’s dynamics and leadership when signing and letting players go.

  3. Philbin cut Long, Dansby and Bush because they wer ed leaders. Philbin is stupid and should be fired.

  4. Marvin Lewis is making a subtle statement to mike brown.

    mike brown has always liked low character projects for two reasons:

    1. low character projects come cheap

    2. low character projects are easy to control

    I am still amazed at what Marvin Lewis has accomplished while coaching under the cheap reign of mike brown.

  5. If you were expecting someone wearing a ‘Free Hernandez” hat to provide leadership, you were expecting a bit much.

  6. Marvin should worry about leading his own team. Any other team would have fired him by now with his shoddy record. This season should be interesting for them without both of his head coach assistants now leading other teams. We’ll see who leads then?

  7. Maybe he should worry about beating the Dolphins as opposed to the culture of the locker room he’s never been in. He’s 0-2 against the “Great” Joe Philbin.

  8. Thank you for your wisdom. Could we get the rest of the NFL to weigh it on this. I think there are about 4 or 5 people that haven’t.

  9. What would Marvin know about a Dolphins locker room he’s never been in?

    Marvin’s just ticked that the Dolphins have beaten his team the last 2 years, “dysfunctional” as they are.

  10. jake long, reggie bush, and karlos dansby proved their poor leadership when they went into Philbin’s office to fight for chad ochojohnsoncinco’s job after he was arrested for beating his wife.

    Philbin knew their was veteran leadership issues when he took over the failing team from the Sparano/Cameron/Saban era.

  11. We have heard nothing from Jake Long about that locker room and I expect we will continue to hear nothing. However, he knew all of the personalities and the risk of implosion.
    While the common perception is that he just left for more money, I would not be surprised if a reason was also to get away from a couple of teammates with mental health issues. We will probably never know but my hunch is that it was not just about the money.

  12. Marvin Lewis should keep quiet, he knows nothing about good leadership. He is not even good enough to coach his team to a playoff victory. Bengals will always look up to the mighty Ravens.


  13. The Dolphins have also beat the Bengals for 2 consecutive seasons. One time in Miami, the other in Cincinnati.

    How about Marvin Lewis worry about beating our leadership???

    The Ravens and Steelers have one bad season and now “Who Dey Say” thinks they have a voice. Drew Brees put that on mute 5 years ago brozays.

  14. How does Lewis account for Long not speaking up about “Bullying” entire year it started. Martin, talks about being harassed when Long was here.

    A: Because Long didn’t see any Bullying. Cause that it’s no different than what was going on in any locker room.

  15. Dolphin fans are truely pathetic. You all want to bash Marvin for his opinion on this matter when asked for it and you all want to thump your chests about beating them. Remember this, you barely squeaked by in both of those games and you needed overtime to do it in the last one. You won’t get that lucky again! you wish that disfunctional organization had half of the high character players the bengals have now but you still want to bring up the past. that’s fine, kids will be kids, I get it. For an organization that hasn’t won a playoff game since 2000, i’d ratchet down the mouthing off. Because quite frankly…you losers have nothing to mouth off about!

  16. So, the fact that Miami has defeated Cincinnati two years in a row is a sensitive topic to you. Got it.

  17. Saying that Jake Long would had said knock it off before it got out of hand, how about martin saying knock it off before I deck your butt, perhaps then he would have some respect from his team mates, if a man won’t stand up for him self then not to many others will help him, how ever if a guy insults your mother and you just stand there, well then what else do you need to know. Bill

  18. Still absolutely no excuse for the coaching staff to not have known what was going on. Their leadership, including the front office was terrible for not understanding the locker room dynamics and getting to know their players better. Leadership starts at the top (owner) and is at every level, so pushing leadership off or blaming the issue of bullying off by not having that leader is short sighted. How many players saw what was happening and didn’t stop or report it. As a HC and the defacto leader he should have known what was going on in his locker room. Miami is the epitome of leadership failure last year.

  19. What do you know you’ve never been in their locker room. Speaking of locker rooms, how many of your players have been arrested? First remove the beam out of your own eye….

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