Jeff Ireland reportedly advised Jonathan Martin to punch Richie Incognito
Pro Football Talk says that Martin’s agent, Rick Smith, called Ireland to complain about the way Incognito had been treating his client prior to Martin walking out on the team on Oct. 28. Ireland supposedly suggested that Martin physically confront Incognito and “punch” him.
Ireland’s suggestion clearly went against what Smith and Martin thought was the bright thing to do. Believing that the Dolphins were not going to handle the situation in a way that they thought was best, Martin walked out on the team.
Ireland’s suggestion that Martin respond to the harassment by fighting Incognito is no different from how many others have viewed the situation. Current lineman Tyson Clabo seemed to suggest the same thing when he said Martin should have stood up and been a man about it.
Whose side you’re on in this issue likely comes down to how you believe is the best way to respond to harassment/bullying. Though the NFL is a place where physical and mental toughness is needed, I fully believe you can be an effective player on the field without having to resort to fighting a teammate in the locker room in order to get that player off your back.
If it turns out that Ireland recommended Martin punch Incognito, there is little doubt he’ll lose his job. If that came true, it would be long overdue for many Dolphins fans who have protested against him. Keep in mind this is the same person who asked Dez Bryant if his mother was a prostitute.
And if it turns out that a Dolphins coach encouraged Incognito to call Martin to get him with the program, you could be looking at a complete change of leadership in Miami across the board.