Suspended Miami Dolphins player Richie Incognito says that his actions against former teammate Jonathan Martin “were coming from a place of love.”
Martin walked away from the NFL team amid charges of being bullied by Incognito.
During an interview with Fox’s Jay Glazer, Incognito addressed the voicemails he allegedly left on Martin’s phone referring to him as a racial epithet.
“My actions were coming from a place of love,” Incognito said. “No matter how bad or how vulgar it sounds, that’s how we communicate, that’s how our friendship was. Those are the facts and that’s what I’m accountable for.”
Dolphins coach Joe Philbin said the team suspended Incognito indefinitely on Nov. 4 after Martin turned in voicemails and text messages showing Incognito using the N-word to describe Martin and threatening his family, according to ESPN.
The allegations surfaced after reports of Martin and other rookies being forced to pay thousands in dinner tabs and vacations for more veteran members of the team. The NFL is now investigating the Dolphins work environment.
“This isn’t an issue about bullying. This is an issue of my and Jon’s relationship where I have taken stuff too far. I did not intend to hurt him,” Incognito said. “When the words are put in the context, I understand why a lot of eyebrows get raised. But people don’t know how Jon and I communicate to one another.”
Turning his cell phone over to Glazer, Incognito showed the host more than 1,000 text messages between him and Martin in their 18 months as teammates. Some showed the two had been in contact since the scandal broke. In one message, Martin wrote, “I don’t blame you guys at all. It’s just the culture around football and the locker room got to me a little.” Another shows Martin congratulating Incognito on a recent Dolphins win.
Thoughts on Incognito’s expression of “love?”
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