The Miami Dolphins are currently wrapped up in the middle of a chaotic situation as everyone tried to figure out exactly what happened to cause offensive tackle Jonathan Martin to leave the team this past Monday. Rumors of emotional issues, bullying, hazing, and more have swirled all week, and seemed to focus on the relationship between Martin and Pro Bowl guard Richie Incognito.
Earlier today, the team released a statement that they had officially received a complaint from Martin's representation of player misconduct within the team. While no further details of exactly what was alleged, or if anyone was named specifically, the team did state that they were conducting an investigation, as well as asking the NFL to conduct a separate investigation into the situation.
Tonight, they apparently took another step in trying to get to the bottom of all of this. According to a tweet from NFL Network's Jeff Darlington, Incognito informed him that head coach Joe Philbin had indefinitely suspended Incognito from the team. The suspension is expected to last through the investigation.
Incognito earlier today had tweeted ESPN's Adam Schefter a series of remarks, since removed from his timeline, stating that the reporter needed to stop slandering Incognito, and that he had once again reported something incorrectly against the guard. This summer, Schefter falsely reported that Incognito had punched, and knocked out, a security guard at a Miami night club. Police report showed it was actually Incognito who had been punched as he tried to break up a fight at the club.
Martin is said to be in contact with the team, but is not expected to rejoin the team for at least a few weeks. Various reports have said that, unless the locker room culture changes, Martin may never return to Miami.
Today, the Miami Herald's Adam Beasley turned the focus of the situation, and a possible reason for Martin leaving the team, to players forcing rookies and younger players to pay for trips and meals. According to Beasley, it is so bad that one defensive player has gone broke from being pressured to pay for the veterans at various events. Beasley wrote that "veterans are using young players as an ATM."
Last year, Incognito is said to have forced Martin to pay $15,000 for a trip of several players to go to Las Vegas. Martin did not go on the trip, but did make the payment, according to an ESPN report.
The Palm Beach Post's Andrew Abramson went back through Martin's Twitter timeline today to find this tweet from the second year tackle, appearing to lend some credence to the monetary nature of this situation:
I'm done playing credit card roulette SMDH— Jonathan A. Martin (@J_Martin71) September 7, 2013
Martin and Incognito reportedly had a 19-text message conversation on Friday, including Martin telling Incognito, "Yeah, I'm good man. It's insane bro, but just know I don't blame you guys at all. It's just the culture around football, and the locker room got to me a little."
At this point, the situation continues to change and update constantly. Check out our StoryStream, where you can subscribe to receive updates on your Facebook wall, or continue to check back here on the Phinsider, as we try to keep up on all the latest in a very strange situation.
The Dolphins next take the field a week from tomorrow on a Monday Night Football showdown with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
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