Why can’t Incognito find a job?

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The fine folks at Deadspin (if I’m nice maybe they won’t call me an idiot when I deserve to be called an idiot) have raised an interesting question about the ongoing unemployment of Richie Igcognito:  Why is his unemployment ongoing?

He became a free agent in March, and Incognito has received only limited sniffs in the eight months since.

In early August, Incognito said his agent has “had some nibbles.”  Later that month, the Bucs brought Incognito in for a visit, at a time that a trade for Logan Mankins was being finalized.  Earlier this week, the Broncos gave Incognito a look-see, possibly to get the attention of the team’s current complement of guards.

Incognito’s behavior, while unacceptable, really isn’t all that different than what some other football players have done over the years.  For Incognito, the problem arose from the fact that former Dolphins tackle Jonathan Martin ultimately reacted to the comments and conduct in a negative way.  Otherwise, no one ever may have known about it.

Incognito has plenty of talent.  As Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald pointed out during Wednesday’s edition of PFT Live, Incognito needs to be on a roster where he’s not expected or permitted to be a leader.  With a team like the Broncos, Incognito would be held in firmly check by quarterback Peyton Manning.

As the postseason approaches, a team that views Incognito as the potential difference between advancement and elimination could decide to give Incognito a chance.  For now, his inability to get a job shows how hard it will be for someone like Ray Rice to find another team, if/when he’s reinstated.

65 responses to “Why can’t Incognito find a job?

  1. He is being blackballed by the NFL. Goodell is trying to protect their image and it’s laughable. He is as good as half of the players at his position. I wish the Chargers would give him a sniff but that ain’t happening.

  2. Why can’t Incognito find a job?

    Probably because he isn’t actually good enough to be worth the hassle.

  3. I read all the text from him and Martin. It was guys joking on each other. Martin with his mental issues made it seem worse. Ask any old school player and they will tell you they paid $$$$ for dinners and everything.

  4. “Why can’t Incognito find a job?”
    Ummm, I’m sure the constant smearing and sensationalizing by “sports media” had nothing to do with it.

  5. I’m thinking the reason you can’t find a job is…Every city where you’ve hung your helmet you have been an issue be it college or professional football…

  6. Sure, Peyton doesn’t have enough responsibilities now. He should be given the additional job of trying to house train a neanderthol.

  7. The problem with Incognito is that his poor reputation stems from his actions in the locker room, unlike other NFL troublemakers, such as Aldon Smith and Josh Gordon, whose bad reps are a result of their actions off the field. Richie certainly is talented, but no one is going to want a guy who has the potential to ruin their team’s chemistry.

  8. Q. What do Nebraska, Oregon, St. Louis, Buffalo and Miami have in common?
    A. They all found that Incognito’s contributions were not worth the trouble he causes.

    Simple question, simple answer. Some big ego coaches will take a sniff thinking it won’t happen to them, but ….

  9. The whole thing with Incognito got blown way out of proportion. He did not deserve to lose his career and I hope he gets another shot. Guys have played football again after killing other people. Incognito should not be blacklisted for what he did.

  10. Because his talent isn’t at a high enough level, that teams are willing to deal with the bad press that comes from signing him. If someone thought Incognito would get them to the Superbowl, he would be on a roster, regardless of the media storm.

  11. I think it’s probably because he’s not in shape due to his suspension over that BS “Bullygate”. The media slaughtering his image for months for acting like a guy that plays a violent sport for a living certainly hasn’t helped him either.

  12. “Incognito’s behavior, while unacceptable, really isn’t all that different than what some other football players have done over the years.”


    Really? Given the entire body of Incognito’s number of incidents in both college and the pros, I beg to differ.

  13. I get the feeling there’s more than a few teams with OLine issues that would love his fairly serviceable play, but no team wants to be “That” team. A lot of undesirable media distraction, especially mid-season when focus needs to be undisturbed.

  14. While I won’t defend anything Incognito did, I also feel very strongly that 1) he did not act alone, and 2) he was acting at the direction of the O line coach, and with the full knowledge and consent of the coaching staff.

    He may have been the leader, but other players – who are still playing – were involved as well. Also, anyone who’s ever been in a locker room knows that some forms of hazing/harassment take place. What Martin went through seems pretty mild to me, and most of it was just his teammates trying to bond with him.

    Incognito is the scapegoat, and it’s wrong that he’s been cast as “the problem”. It was a TEAM issue.

  15. Other than that he’s a scumbag and very dirty player, the whole bullying thing was a total joke.

    Its the mob rules mentality that the NFL is following these days. “Oh noes, the peoples don’t like something this guy did, we better find a way to unofficially ban him right away, to hell with the CBA.”

  16. Jonathan Martin is a snake and had no problem giving as good as he got until he got demoted when he couldn’t cut it as a LT. Suddenly all the problems started, he began releasing parsed texts out of context, not thinking that Incog would to his own detriment, release them all and was as much to blame as anyone in that lockerroom. Incognito even stood up for Martin when that delicate boy was being harrassed by another player. He’s the fall guy and to his credit, didn’t dish the dirt in return about the troubling negatives attached to Martin. Richie may be a bull in a china shop, but he was a great teammate and deserves another shot.

  17. Incognito can’t get a job because he’s no longer incognito.

    Seriously, he’s on the flip side of the coin that tried so hard to get Michael Sam into the NFL.

  18. Me and a group of friends met him at a resort a couple years back and can honestly say that he was a really nice guy. We were a little hesitant to approach him given his reputation but were pleasantly surprised by how cool he was. That’s not to say that all the other stories about him didn’t happen, but the point is that he’s clearly more complex than the one-dimensional bully he is often portrayed as. He could have been as big of a jerk as he wanted to be and he only difference would be my story.

  19. Probably 20 or so teams would sign him if they weren’t worried about “how it would appear.”
    Including the Dolphins.
    Richie Incognito, Ray Rice, and Adrian Peterson are all being black-listed and crucified by the NFL, b/c all of a sudden the league is worried about P/R, PC, and their “image.”
    So, what’s a few sacrificial lambs??
    I think it’s a disgrace that these guys are being denied a way to make a living the only way they know how just to be made an example of.
    And, no, I’m not into or condoning wife-beating, bullying, or child abuse, but……….
    If Michael Vick paid his dues–why can’t they??!!

  20. It wasn’t “bullying” until Martin lost his starting job and quit on the team. But quitters don’t get future NFL gigs, so “quitting” became “bullying”, and the PFT’s and Deadspin’s of the world ate it up.

  21. It’s obviously clearly “implied” that Incognito is “hands off” as far as The League goes, or you will be on their $hit list.
    Imagine that…an aggressive bully with an attitude problem in the NFL…who knew???!!

  22. I think it has more to do with him taking a baseball bat to his Lambo out of random-rage whilst under intense media scrutiny… how many false starts and illegally downfields will this brainiac manufacture for you?

    I would suggest the Hawks take a look, except Tom Cable only hires guys who are good at non-football, non-offensive line activities like kung fu and pinochle.

  23. Because Richie is probably a sociopath. He skated on thin ice for years but was always given opportunities because of his talent.
    The Dolphins asking Richie to “mentor” Jonathan Martin to toughen him up, was like handing the keys to the pharmacy to a recovering drug addict.
    Richie will talk a good game in the interviews. He can be very charming, but given time his true personality takes over. He is a dangerous sociopath.
    Tavisteelerfan above is correct – Nebraska, Oregon, St. Louis, Buffalo and Miami, all made the mistake of giving Richie another opportunity. Buyer beware (and that also applies to his Ferrari that he beat up with a baseball bat)

  24. He, Tebow, and Michael Sam should start a squad that would probably win 2 out of 3 games against the Steelers.

  25. Wait a minute here. The author makes it sound like Incognito is just one of the guys, and similar to other NFL players. Not so. In addition to being a locker room cancer, the guy is mad as a hatter. He has behaved in an insane manner everywhere he has played. His latest, if you recall,was that he destroyed his own Ferrari with a ball peen hammer, while at the same time he was publicly calling Jonathan Martin insane, on twitter. The guy just is not right with reality. This is why he does not have a job. Why risk blowing up the chemistry of an entire team so that you can have an average guard starting for your team? This is why he is out of work.

  26. It is not punishment. He is not being kept off teams because of some penance he has to pay for being bad. His past behaviour is being used as an indicator of his future behaviour. Hire him and you’ll get a decent guard who within a year will cause you and your team a bunch of grief.

    He almost single-handedly blew up the Dolphins. Never mind the bullying of Martin and the equipment guy … just reflect on him being kicked off four teams in a row before the dolphins, and then, at a team sponsored charity golf tournament, he harasses a young women there volunteering. On that alone how much distraction time did it create for management and coaches, never mind the players and ‘getting stories straight’ and jawing about it. He is a buffoon.

  27. If a guy is willing to smash his own expensive sports car on a whim, he’s capable of doing anything.
    Sorry, but I look at the photo of Incognito accompanying this article, and I think “knucklehead.”

  28. The same reason no one will sign Ray Rice. The reaction from the fan base would be ugly and no GM in his right mind will touch that cancer. It’s pretty simple.

  29. Definitely better than any lineman the Panthers, Falcons are putting out there ohh what do you know both teams belong to one of the worst divisions in recent memory.

  30. This guy should be a Raider by now. That fact that he isn’t, speaks volumes about how inept that front office really is.

  31. Bonnovi obviously doesn’t know Incognito. He’s plenty good enough to get a job, too bad the Dolphins don’t want him back.

  32. I wonder if sexually assaulting that woman on the golf course has anything to do with his trouble finding a job.

  33. Incognito’s a jerk a locker room cancer that teams don’t need right now. The NFL’s image has taken a beating in the last year or so I think teams are starting to be more selective when it comes to signing guys like Richie, Rice or Peterson.

  34. I think he can’t find a job because most teams would rather try out a 2nd or 3rd rounder on a rookie contract than give a veteran free agent deal to a guy who’s literally been kicked off of every college and pro team he’s been on (5 total). Even TO can’t claim that many burned bridges.

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