Locker Room Conflict Causes Uproar in Miami

Anabel Palmer December 13, 2013 1
Locker Room Conflict Causes Uproar in Miami

There is great conflict in the NFL community regarding Richie Incognito‘s persecution of fellow Miami Dolphin Jonathan Martin.

The problem surfaced when Incognito sent racist texts to Martin. According to ESPN, Incognito constantly harassed Martin in the Dolphin’s locker room. He was accused of physical, and verbal harassment. In 2012, Incognito was also accused of sexual harassment, making it difficult to make a substantial case.

Incognito and Martin had a complicated relationship—both having different roles on the team. Even ESPN says Icognito was so well liked, while Martin received little attention.

Others, like Dolphin’s quarterback Ryan Tannehill, believed that Icognito and Martin were “best friends.” Many are wondering why someone would act in such a violent way— harassing a colleague and claimed friend.

Jonathan Martin chose to leave the Miami Dolphins after the hazing went too far. Martin broke the silence when he announced, “I do not intend to discuss this matter publicly at this time…This is the right way to handle this matter.” Incognito was suspended for his crude actions shortly after. His suspension could last up to four games or be extended further with pay.

In the meantime, the Dolphins are faced with a new challenge. After losing two starters, they must continue to play in the NFL. Tyson Clabo started as right tackle (Martin’s previous position) in a recent game and backup Nate Garner started as left guard.

Several NFL coaches have spoken out about the matter, including head coach Joe Philbin of the Miami Dolphins. In an interview regarding an upcoming safety review of the team, Philbin said, “If the review shows that this is not a safe atmosphere, I’ll take whatever measures are necessary to ensure that it is.”

In a separate interview, NFL analyst Bill Polian added, “Who enforces those rules in the locker room? The senior players. This is a failure of leadership among the senior players on the Miami Dolphins.”

This week, criminal attorney Ted Wells will meet with the Dolphins in order to confirm what really happened in the the locker room.

When the Oracle asked Archer students about the issue, responses came back concluding that the students were displeased with the current situation of the NFL.

Micaela Paulson ’16 shared, “I don’t think people should be mean or start drama. Especially not on a team, because the whole point of being on a team is working together in order to succeed.”

Featured Image: The Miami Dolphins walking onto the field. Photographer: Greg Howard

One Comment »

  1. beth gold December 16, 2013 at 3:34 PM -

    Thanks for making the Archer community aware of this negative aspect to locker room chatter. This issue raises some interesting questions about crossing the line between playful banter into offensive remarks. There are different standards on what is considered acceptable language from someone within a group as opposed to from someone outside the group.