DAVIE, Fla. -- The basic role that Jonathan Martin and Richie Incognito shared as offensive linemen for the Miami Dolphins was protecting quarterback Ryan Tannehill. The roles are now reversed. Tannehill is defending both Martin and Incognito, the central characters in a bullying saga that has taken both offensive linemen off the field and continued to evolve Wednesday when the NFL appointed a lawyer to investigate possible misconduct within the team workplace. Shortly afterward, many Dolphins spoke out about the matter for the first time -- and with at least one questioning Martins motives. "I dont know why hes doing this," offensive lineman Tyson Clabo said. "And the only person who knows why, his name is Jonathan Martin." Two people familiar with the situation told The Associated Press on Wednesday that Martin considered quitting football in the past, with one of those people saying it was because of how other offensive linemen treated him. The people spoke on condition of anonymity because the organization has not given specific reasons about his departure from the team. Incognito is suspended. Martin left the Dolphins last week after a lunchroom prank, and remains excused. "If you had asked Jon Martin a week before who his best friend on the team was, he would have said Richie Incognito," Tannehill said, on another day when dozens of reporters descended on the team complex. "The first guy to stand up for Jonathan when anything went down on the field, any kind of tussle, Richie was the first guy there. When they wanted to hang out outside of football, who was together? Richie and Jonathan." The prank was a silly one -- when Martin sat down to eat, everyone else at the table stood up and walked away. Its apparently a go-to comedic ploy for the Dolphins; Tannehill and offensive lineman John Jerry both said theyve been targets of that very act in the past, and that its typically just laughed off. Not this time. Martin left the team on Oct. 28 after it happened. The story has continued spiraling ever since, with questions about not only whether bullying was tolerated, but if Incognito used racially charged terms against his teammate in phone and text messages. Incognito is white. Martin is biracial. "Whats perceived is that he was a racist, psychopath maniac," Clabo said, defending Incognito. "The reality is Richie was a good teammate, and that Richie and Jonathan Martin were friends, or appeared to be." Added Jerry, who is black, speaking about Incognitos alleged use of a racial slur: "I know the type of person he is and I know he dont mean it that way." How everything inside the Dolphins locker room is meant will now be probed by New York attorney Ted Wells, the NFLs choice to dig into the matter. Wells has experience with high-profile sports matters, having been involved with special investigations into the Syracuse basketball sexual harassment case and the NBA players union leadership dispute. Dolphins owner Stephen Ross said the team will co-operate fully with Wells investigation. "The type of culture that Ive championed since the day Ive walked through these doors has been one of honesty, respect and accountability to one another," Miami coach Joe Philbin said. "I consider those to be hallmarks of this program, and I believe our locker room reflects those beliefs. I believe in the men in our locker room, and I believe in our coaching staff." Inside that locker room, players defended both themselves and Philbin. "Whats been bothering me is kind of things that you hear from outside this locker room about things that maybe undermine the integrity or the leadership or the type of players and the class of guys that we have here and the class of this organization," defensive end Cameron Wake said. "Ive been here five years and coach Philbin has done nothing but turn this organization in a positive direction from top to bottom." Wide receiver Brian Hartline said seeing the franchise take hits over the saga was difficult to bear. "Now were able to say our opinion and protect ourselves from being bullied by you guys because we werent talking," Hartline said. "We werent fighting back. We never said a word. We had to sit back and listen for a couple of days. Were kind of tired of it." Clabo said theres a way the offensive linemen treat one another, that no one is exempt from the ribbing and that its done to keep the mood light in the room. "You have to earn the trust of your teammates in this league," Clabo said. "No one is going to walk in the door and just automatically be somebody that you want to go into a game with and believe and trust and know that that persons going to be there when hes supposed to be there. Those things have to be earned." At this point, its unknown if Martin will have that trust -- or even if hell return to the Dolphins, period. Tannehill said that if either Martin or Incognito returned, he would be inclined to try to move on from this saga. "All I know about Richie is hes a great teammate to me," Tannehill said. "I saw him being a great teammate all the time. Does he like to give guys a hard time? Yes. Does he like to pester guys and have fun? Yes. But he brought a lot of laughter to this locker room, he brought a lot of cohesiveness to this locker room and he was the best teammate that I could ask for." ------ Alfred Morris Jersey
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. -- Kevin Harvick pulled away on a restart with 47 laps to go and ended Chase Elliotts two-race winning streak in NASCARs Nationwide Series with a dominating victory early Saturday at Richmond International Raceway. PHILADELPHIA -- All that extra batting practice paid off for Wilmer Flores. Flores hit a grand slam and drove in a career-high six runs, Bartolo Colon threw seven-plus sharp innings and the New York Mets beat the Philadelphia Phillies 11-2 Monday night in a makeup from an April rainout. "It felt good," Flores said. "Been struggling the last couple games, and I didnt feel good my first two at-bats, but as the game was going I made the adjustment, so I put a good swing on it. I havent been playing that much, so Ive just been taking extra batting practice. That helped." After playing 39 innings in the three previous games, the teams finally didnt go extras. The Mets took four of five from the Phillies and are 9-1 in Citizens Bank Park, dating to last season. Colon (5-5) allowed two runs and six hits to win his third straight decision. The 41-year-old righty has a 1.61 ERA in his last three outings. "He knows when he has to put a little something on it," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "Hes the master of taking stuff, taking speed off the ball, getting it to sink, getting it to move. When he needs it, theres still plenty there." The last-place Phillies went 4-7 on a season-long 11-game homestand. Theyre a season-worst seven games under .500 and barely resemble the team that won five consecutive NL East titles from 2007-11. "We didnt play that well this homestand," Chase Utley said. "Nothing we can do about it now. We have to go on the road and win games." Roberto Hernandez (2-3) failed to pitch six innings for the sixth time in 10 starts. He allowed five runs -- four earned -- and five hits in 5 1-3 innings. Bobby Abreu and Lucas Duda hit consecutive doubles in the second to give the Mets a 1-0 lead. The Mets chased Hernandez in the sixth. Matt den Dekker and Daniel Murphy hit consecutive singles to start the inning. David Wright drove theem both in with a shot off the wall in centre.dddddddddddd After a one-out walk to Abreu, Hernandez was replaced by Mario Hollands. Duda hit a grounder to second base that shouldve been an inning-ending double play, but Utley booted it for an error. Flores then looped a two-run double down the right-field line for a 5-0 lead. The Mets blew it open with six runs in the ninth off Jake Diekman and Phillippe Aumont capped by Flores hitting a grand slam, his second career homer in 145 at-bats. "I just want to prove to them that I can do the job," Flores said. "I know Im good and I can do this." Den Dekker, called up from Triple-A Las Vegas a day after being sent down, robbed Ryan Howard of his third homer in three games. He jumped above the short wall in centre and grabbed Howards drive in the second. Den Dekker saved another run in the third when he threw out Reid Brignac trying to score from second on Ben Reveres single. Brignac hadnt even reached third base when den Dekker fielded the ball in medium centre, but third-base coach Pete Mackanin inexplicably waived him home. Howards RBI groundout in the sixth ended Colons scoreless innings streak at 16 1-3. Revere scored on Jeurys Familias wild pitch in the eighth to cut it to 5-2. NOTES: The Mets placed CF Juan Lagares on the 15-day DL with a strained right intercostal muscle. Den Dekker replaced him. ... Phillies ace Cliff Lee, out with an elbow strain, hopes to start a throwing program during Philadelphias upcoming road trip. ... The Phillies are 12-19 at home; 12-12 on the road. The Phillies start a three-game series at Washington on Tuesday. David Buchanan (1-1, 3.86) makes his third career start filling in for Lee. Jordan Zimmermann (3-2, 4.07) goes for the Nationals. ... The Mets head to Chicago for a three-game series vs. the Cubs. Zack Wheeler (2-5, 4.31) faces Jake Arrieta (1-1, 3.20) on Tuesday night. Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys Wholesale NFL Jerseys Jerseys From China Wholesale NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys Cheap Jerseys
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