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Echoing statements he made earlier in October, Buffalo Bills offensive lineman Richie Incognito said Wednesday that he has rebuffed opportunities to meet with former teammate Jonathan Martin.
“I have nothing to say,” Incognito said, according to Adam Beasley of the Miami Herald, though the 33-year-old added that Martin “had his demons.”
In November 2013, the Miami Dolphins suspended Incognito after he allegedly harassed and bullied Martin. The NFL launched an investigation, led by Ted Wells, into the allegations, and in February 2014, Wells determined Martin dealt with “a pattern of harassment,” according to ESPN.com.
Wells identified Incognito, John Jerry and Mike Pouncey as guilty of bullying Martin.
The Dolphins traded Martin to the San Francisco 49ers in March 2014, and he played 15 games for the Niners in the ensuing season. He signed with the Carolina Panthers the following year but retired in August 2015. In a since-deleted post on Facebook, Martin said he suffered from depression and attempted suicide.
Incognito first spoke about Martin’s attempts to open a line of communication with Albert Breer on The MMQB Podcast on Oct. 4 (via Matthew Fairburn of NYup.com):
I have not communicated with Jonathan since then. He’s tried to reach out to me a few times but I have nothing to say to him. The damage is done, man. We were good friends, we were good buddies. He could have reached out to me at anytime and apologized and set the record straight or told his side of the story. But he chose to do it how he wanted to. He wanted to do it through Ted Wells, he didn’t want the NFLPA to help him out. He wanted to use his mom as a lawyer who’s a workplace harassment attorney and they just wanted to shift the narrative themselves. And congratulations to them. They did. They won.
After leaving the Dolphins, Incognito missed the entire 2014 season but has found success with the Bills since signing with them in 2015. He started all 16 games for Buffalo and made the Pro Bowl last year.
On Wednesday, Bills head coach Rex Ryan spoke highly of Incognito’s character.
“Every teammate respects him,” he said, according to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald. “People in our community look up to Richie.”