-- Miami Dolphins players Richie Incognito, John Jerry and Mike Pouncey harassed Jonathan Martin, an unnamed offensive lineman referred to as Player A, and an assistant trainer. The report found the trio “engaged in a pattern of harassment directed at not only Martin, but also another young Dolphins offensive lineman, whom we refer to as Player A for confidentiality reasons, and a member of the training staff, whom we refer to as the Assistant Trainer.”
-- Martin’s mental health issues were weighed. “To be candid, we struggled with how to evaluate Martin’s claims of harassment given his mental health issues, his possible heightened sensitivity to insults and his unusual, “bipolar” friendship with Incognito. Nonetheless, we ultimately concluded that Martin was indeed harassed by Incognito, who can fairly be described as the main instigator, and by Jerry and Pouncey, who tended to follow Incognito’s lead.”
-- Incognito kept a list of offensive lineman fines in a notebook. Tackle Tyson Clabo, the treasurer, kept the money in his locker. The report says, “shortly after Martin left the team, Incognito made a number of telling entries in a notebook used to keep track of “fines” the offensive linemen imposed on each other in their “kangaroo court” (typically for trivial infractions such as arriving late to meetings). Incognito recorded a $200 fine against himself for “breaking Jmart,” awarded another lineman who had been verbally taunted a $250 bonus for “not cracking first.”
-- Incognito had two incidents of bad behavior at a team-sponsored golf tournament in March 2012, and met with Goodell in July 2012. At the golf tournament, Incognito and “several other players commandeered a guest’s car for joy-riding in the parking lot of the golf club and allegedly damaged the guest’s luggage. The next day, Incognito allegedly molested a female volunteer at the tournament.” Incognito was fined $5,000 for the first incident and $50,000 for the second, although the bigger fine hasn’t been paid because Incognito filed a grievance. There was also an incident at a Miami restaurant in June 2012, although the allegation couldn’t be substantiated. Because of those three incidents Incognito was summoned to Goddell’s office in July 2012 and basically told to straighten up or he’d be subject to disciplinary action.
-- Players generally liked Incognito. “Nearly every player we interviewed had a strong reaction to Incognito. Many of them emphatically stated that he was a great teammate, a force on the field and a hard worker in the weight room and in practice. Many considered him a leader and a friend. At the same time, we repeatedly heard him described as loud, aggressive and boisterous, with little sense of social boundaries - someone who was constantly making boorish jokes and getting in his teammates’ faces, more so than other players, and frequently more than was welcome.” The report continued, “One player, whom we found credible, said that Incognito was “a good player, but he is kind of a disease; he divides a locker room. . . .[Incognito] is the kind of guy who has to be the alpha male.” This player went on to say that Incognito “feels like he has to make fun of the younger players,” and “people join in with him so he doesn’t make fun of them.”
-- Martin said harassment/bullying started in 2012. “Martin traced the onset of what he considered to be verbal harassment to around the first game of the 2012 season, when, according to Martin, John Jerry began to call him a “bitch” repeatedly, in what Martin said was a disrespectful and demeaning tone. Martin reported that at one point, Jerry dared him to “say something back,” and soon after he did not, the insults escalated, with Incognito, Jerry and Pouncey routinely” using other derogatory terms.
--Guard Nate Garner was thought by some to receive more abuse than Martin. After Martin left the team on Oct. 28, Garner sent him a text message that read, ““Hey bro if u need to talk to anyone I’m here for ya. I have been dealing with this (expletive) for 6 years. I hope ur doin ok.”
--In May 2013, Martin told offensive line coach Jim Turner he’d been depressed and had contemplated suicide in January 2013. Turner told Philbin, and Philbin talked with Martin. They agreed to call Martin’s parents and eventually had Martin see a local psychiatrist who prescribed the drug “Lexapro, an anti-depressant, which Martin began to take daily.” Martin’s father eventually had a “father to father” talk with Philbin. Martin said he didn’t feel the psychiatrist could relate to him because he was 84 years old. Consequently, Martin never told he felt he was harassed by teammates. He also felt the doctor would tell the Dolphins about the harassment, and Martin would be labeled a “snitch.”
-- Conclusion of Wells report: ”As all must surely recognize, the NFL is not an ordinary workplace. Professional football is a rough, contact sport played by men of exceptional size, speed, strength and athleticism. But even the largest, strongest and fleetest person may be driven to despair by bullying, taunting and constant insults. We encourage the creation of new workplace conduct rules and guidelines that will help ensure that players respect each other as professionals and people.”
TED WELLS REPORT
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