Print and Go Back ESPN.com: NFL [Print without images]

Tuesday, November 5, 2013
Updated: November 6, 8:16 AM ET
Martin never approached Joe Philbin

ESPN.com news services

Offensive lineman Jonathan Martin did not approach Miami Dolphins coach Joe Philbin to voice his concerns about instances of alleged harassment, sources told ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter on Tuesday.

The NFL is investigating the troubled relationship between Martin and fellow offensive lineman Richie Incognito. One of the pivotal questions being posed by both the league and the NFL Players Association is whether Martin reached out to Philbin as the issues were unfolding.

Martin left the Dolphins last week because of emotional issues, and Incognito was suspended indefinitely Sunday by Philbin for his treatment of his teammate. The Dolphins did not place Martin on the non-football injury list Tuesday, meaning he will remain on the active roster and be paid this week, a source told Schefter.

It's unclear whether Dolphins coaches or management knew of any harassment between the players before Martin left the team. Recent talk of dissension in the locker room has included complaints by young players that they're pressured to pay more than their share when team members socialize together.

The Miami Herald reported Monday that the Dolphins plan to cut ties with Incognito.

The NFLPA released a statement Tuesday saying it will insist on a fair investigation for all involved in the harassment case.

"We expect that the NFL and its clubs create a safe and professional workplace for all players and that owners, executives, coaches and players should set the best standards and examples," the union's statement said. "As the representative organization of all players, the NFLPA will insist on a fair investigation for all involved. We will continue to remain in contact with the impacted players, their representatives and player leadership."

Multiple sources confirmed to ESPN on Monday that Incognito used racial epithets and profane language toward Martin on multiple occasions. In a transcript of a voice mail message from April, Incognito referred to Martin as a "half n----- piece of s---."

The 6-foot-3, 319-pound Incognito, a ninth-year pro, is white. The 6-5, 312-pound Martin, who is in his second NFL season, is biracial.

Sources say Martin also received a series of texts that included derogatory terms referring to the female anatomy and sexual orientation.

While much of the reaction to the situation has been supportive of Martin, New York Giants safety Antrel Rolle indicated that the second-year lineman should have stuck up for himself.

"Was Richie Incognito wrong? Absolutely," Rolle said Tuesday during a radio interview with WFAN in New York. "But I think the other guy is just as much to blame as Richie because he allowed it to happen.

"At this level, you're a man. You're not a little boy. You're not a freshman in college. You're a man."

The usually docile Philbin became somewhat emotional while addressing the media Monday, taking the blame for the environment that was created in his locker room.

"I want you to know, as head coach of the Miami Dolphins, I am in charge of the workplace atmosphere," Philbin said. "Since April 10, 2012, when players first came here … every decision I've made, everything we've done at this facility was done with one thing in mind: that is to help our players and our organization to reach their full potential. Any type of conduct and behavior that detracts from that objective will not be tolerated."

Several Dolphins players have said they were unaware of any issues between Martin and Incognito.

"I never heard anything about it until now," said linebacker Dannell Ellerbe, who was a member of Miami's six-player leadership council along with Incognito.

Ellerbe also indicated that Martin should have informed the leadership council of his problems.

"We don't have no problem with [coming forward]," Ellerbe said. "We would try to handle it the best way possible. We would rather that [happen] than this."

Starting left tackle Bryant McKinnie, who was traded to the Dolphins two weeks ago, also was surprised by the news.

"I didn't sense anything," McKinnie said. "I mean, I was kind of caught off guard with it. I don't really know too much about the situation because I just got here."

Starting cornerback Dimitri Patterson has played for five teams in eight seasons. He said sometimes personal issues between players fall between the cracks in a locker room.

"Everybody has their own deal going on. Guys don't know," Patterson said. "There's so much that goes on throughout a work week, and there's so much that goes on throughout guys' individual lives. Guys have kids, guys have other things that's going on."

Information from ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter, ESPN.com Dolphins reporter James Walker, ESPN.com Giants reporter Dan Graziano and The Associated Press was used in this report.