Regarding the "locker room mentality" of football players, I believe it is just that, a mentality. I don't know anything about Jonathan Martin outside of his wikipedia page, but when someone has narrowed down their college choices to Harvard and Stanford, I think it is safe to say that he is a "cut above" intellectually. Perhaps that was the issue. He was willing to put up with a certain amount of crap, as any logical person would in order to make the life-changing amount of money an NFL job offers. But, at some point, a line was crossed, and a man with dignity (and choices) will simply say "enough."
I have a distinct problem with people saying he needed to handle it like a man. To a civilized and logical person, this is exactly how a man handles this sort of thing. I am even more impressed because, with his strength and size, he is perfectly capable of pushing Incognito's nasal bone into his brain, thus ending the abuse. Unfortunately, to the mouth breathers who play in and watch the NFL, that is the only kind of response they understand or respect.
With all the talk of bullying, I think it is too simple to label it that. It brings to mind, as you yourself said, of playground push fights between larger bullies and little kids. This serves to make Martin seem like a pussy for not simply "handling it like a man" This was one huge man acting like a child and another huge man acting like an adult.
As always, keep up the great work.
Michael Lehman M.D.
Michael, well put, and amen. Thank you. It makes zero sense that the "only" way for Martin to handle it "like a man" was to put himself on the simplistic level of this idiot above.
Only because of the NFL's "rights system" did Martin not have the choice any other person would have in the professional world - to simply quit and go work for another more "evolved" company than the "Miami Dolphins Football Inc."
Only in the testosterone soaked, but logically crippled world of high level football could a team think that a guy who has earned the STARTING LEFT TACKLE position needed to be "toughened up."
Hey, dummies. You didn't have anybody better!
If Martin was such a marshmallow when it came to actually playing football, instead of crushing brews and hanging out with Richie Incognito and his boyz, then bench his ass and start somebody else.
If he's not finishing blocks on the field because he's "soft"... then COACH HIM!
It's not that hard.
Now the entire Dolphins team (and fanbase, what's left of it) pays the price for utterly bad coaching and management. You are OUT two starting linemen, because you didn't have a pulse on the working environment on your team.
And entire off-season of preparation, countless hours of scouting and coaching, the grind of a regular season...and you are on the verge of throwing it all away because of this?
So go ahead, blame Martin. Sound "tough". And you'll end up being what you deserve to be: losers.