Miami Dolphins offensive lineman Jonathan Martin opened up about his decision to leave the team in an interview this week with former NFL coach Tony Dungy, his first since allegations of hazing in the Dolphins’ locker room in October.
“There was persistent comments of a racial nature, aggressive sexual comments related to my sister and my mother,” Martin told Dungy in the interview, portions of which aired Wednesday on NBC’s TODAY show. “I’ve spoken to my former teammates in other locker rooms across the NFL, and I asked them, does this stuff go on? Is this normal rookie hazing? The consensus was, this is not normal.”
Martin was a rookie with the Dolphins last season, having been selected in the second round of the 2012 NFL draft. He said hazing and harassment persisted in 2013, though, eventually forcing him to remove himself from the team.
“I’m a grown man. I’ve been in locker rooms,” Martin said. “There’s vulgar language in locker rooms. One instance doesn’t bother me. It’s the persistence of it.”
“I have no problem with the normal hazing that you see in the NFL,” he added. “‘Get a haircut,’ stuff like that, little pranks. The personal attacking nature, I don’t think there’s any place for that.”
Martin said he talked to his position coaches about the treatment, but he did not approach head coach Joe Philbin because he did not want to be viewed as a “snitch.”
“I was trying with all my being to do whatever I could to be a member of this culture and of the offensive line,” he said.
Martin, who is still under contract with the Dolphins, said that he very much wants his NFL career to continue. If his team were playing in the Super Bowl this weekend, he said, he would play.
“I don’t think there’s any question that I’m ready,” Martin said.
Hear more of the interview in the video below.