The Jonathan Martin–Richie Incogntio situation has taken the sports world by storm over the last couple of days. It once seemed like we were just talking about a case of bullying. But after transcripts of Martin’s voicemail were released, everything changed. Not only was Incognito bullying Martin, he was threatening his life. I suppose one could argue that a death threat is the ultimate form of bullying. But regardless of your stance on bullying, I think we can all agree that Incognito was way over the line. Threatening another man’s life is about as serious as it gets.
So naturally, there have been many opinions and takes on this entire situation. New York Giants‘ safety Antrel Rolle is one player that has an old school-type of opinion on the matter. Here’s what the defensive back had to say:
“Was Richie Incognito wrong? Absolutely. I think the other guy is just as much to blame because he’s allowed this to happen. This football league is not built of men who try to bully other men. You’re a grown-a** man. You should be able to stand up for yourself. Something like that would never ever happen to myself, because I would never allow it. At this level, you’re a man.”
I think Rolle raises a valid point. I don’t necessarily agree with him when he says that the other guy is just as much to blame, but his opinion does make sense. There are people in the world that would have never let the situation get to where it ended up. Obviously, Martin is not one of those people. But there are many guys who simply wouldn’t have let this happen.
Rolle will probably get killed for making the comments, but give him credit for fully acknowledging that Incogntio was wrong. Rolle was off base in saying that it’s just as much Martin’s fault, but there’s also no doubt that many players would have never allowed the situation to play out like it did.