More fun sociology news from the Dolphins’ locker room today, involving our favorite schoolyard bully, Richie Incognito, and of course Jonathan Martin, the pre-Spider-Man Peter Parker of our saga. In his Dolphins Blog today in the Miami Herald, Armando Salguero quoted several Dolphins’ players who say they have no problem with Incognito, and are backing him in this controversy. But the weirdest thing was this: many Dolphins’ black players considered Incognito black, apparently.
“Richie is honarary,” one player who left the Dolphins this offseason told me today. “I don’t expect you to understand because you’re not black. But being a black guy, being a brother is more than just about skin color. It’s about how you carry yourself. How you play. Where you come from. What you’ve experienced. A lot of things.”
Yep, in the Dolphins’ locker room, apparently, Incognito was considered more black than Martin. Martin was considered “soft” by many of the players, a reputation earned not only by his play, but due to his background — his parents are well-to-do, his mom is an attorney, he attended Stanford, etc. That was a big deal, at least in Miami, according to the Herald.
ESPN analyst and former Dolphins wide receiver Cris Carter has know Mike Pouncey since the player’s childhood. Today Carter said on air he recently spoke to Mike Pouncey and the center, who is Incognito’s friend, addressed race.
“They don’t feel as if he’s a racist, they don’t feel as if he picked on Jonathan repeatedly and bullied him, but if they could do it all over again there would be situations that they might change but they’re very, very comfortable with Richie,” Carter said.
Martin’s case is a sad one, mostly because Martin just wants to play football and be free of all this locker room politics and nonsense. But there’s no doubt in many corners, among them some Dolphins’ fans, that Incognito is a “victim” and Martin is a “coward”. Just look at the Herald’s comments section. People calling Incognito “Cogs”, and generally bashing Martin for being weak. It’s enough to make you sick.
I have to admit that this ongoing peek into NFL locker room sociology is kind of fascinating, though.