Richie Incognito is back in the news again. Not that he ever really left. You might remember Incognito as the Miami Dolphins offensive lineman who was accused of bullying by teammate Jonathan Martin. Martin, who claimed Incognito left voice mails and sent text messages to him which contained racial slurs, was so distraught over the situation that he left the team in October for the remainder of the 2013 season.
The accusations led to Incognito being suspended from the team. Incognito denied Martin’s claims, taking to Twitter to lash out at his former teammate. On February 12, Incognito tweeted “I’ve been dragged through the mud for months by my “best friend,” and “The truth is going to bury you and your entire “camp.”
On February 14, the results of an investigation by the law firm of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton and Garrison LLP confirmed that Martin, along with an unnamed teammate and an assistant trainer, was indeed harassed by Incognito and two other members of the team, John Jerry and Mike Pouncey.
The report, know as the Wells Report, details a pattern of harassment including racial slurs, homophobic name-calling, improper physical touching, and sexually explicit remarks involving Martin’s sister and mother.
On February 27, Scottsdale, AZ police responded to a report of damage to Incognito’s $300,000 Ferrari. When contacted by the police, Incognito, who has been treated for anger management issues before, admitted to smashing the car’s hood and grill with a baseball bat.
On Friday, February 28, word came that Incognito had been admitted to an Arizona treatment facility, where he will be psychologically evaluated. While reports differ on whether he went in for treatment on his own, or was committed involuntarily, a source close to Incognito says that he was “mentally exhausted” and checked himself in.
What’s next for Incognito? His future is uncertain. While his suspension was lifted on February 5, Incognito will become an unrestricted free agent in March. At a recent news conference, in response to a question about whether or not Incognito or Martin would return to the team, Dolphins owner Steven Ross stated “I don’t believe so.”
It remains to be seen if another team will take a chance on the offensive lineman. But judging by the NFL’s past in dealing with troubled players, it is likely that someone will feel that, if he can help them win, he’s worth the risk.