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Friday 8 November 2013
I guess now that even The Daily Show is talking about the Dolphins' locker room meltdown, I, as a Dolphins fan and frequent critic, should probably comment on it, too.
Was offensive tackle Jonathan Martin bullied? Was offensive guard Richie Incognito following orders when he called Martin racial slurs and extorted $15,000 from him? Did the Dolphins coaches really have no idea what was going on? I don't know. All I see is the second half of the 2013 season getting flushed down the toilet.
At this point, we've lost two starting offensive linemen, probably for the rest of the year and maybe forever. Through eight games, we're already allowed 35 sacks. Given that half our starting offensive linemen have left the team, that's not going to get better.
Also, I think I've mentioned before that I'm not impressed with Coach Philbin's ability at managing people. This is just more of the same. I've never been in an NFL locker room, but I find it inconceivable that Philbin had no idea that there was bad blood on his team. If Philbin's staff really did encourage Incognito, that's not just morally wrong, it also might cripple the team. Last year the NFL suspended several coaches for encouraging players to injure other players on the field. What's the likelihood that the NFL won't come down hard on a coach who encourages the same sort of behavior in his own team?
Because I can't talk about the Dolphins' off-the-field drama without taking a parting shot at my least favorite member of the organization, let me point out that we wouldn't be in this situation at all if General Manager Jeff Ireland hadn't drafted Martin and signed free agent Incognito. Yes, I'm finding a way to blame Ireland for this mess. It's what I do.
UPDATE 2013-11-08 4PM: ProFootballTalk.com reports that Martin's agent reported the bullying to Ireland before Martin left the team. Ireland's response was to tell Martin to punch Incognito. Imagine telling your boss that you were being harassed, and your boss telling you just to punch your coworker. Yeah, that'll do it. The Dolphins continue to pretend that it doesn't have to conform to the same workplace conditions as the rest of the country. I think they'll find that defense isn't going to stand up for itself.
Also, the NFL's "independent" investigation announced that Martin will be interviewed about the situation late next week. This thing is going to drag on forever. *sigh*