Tannehill: We Have To Get Ready To Play A Football Game

Posted Nov 6, 2013

Ryan Tannehill holds his weekly press conference and delivers candid comments regarding the relationship between Richie Incognito and Jonathan Martin as well as how they were viewed inside of the Dolphins locker room.

(On if everything caught him off guard or if he had an idea that things were going on) – “It’s really a surprise. The whole thing is kind of mind blowing to me and it’s kind of mind blowing to most of the guys on the team right now.”

(On if he saw the side of Richie Incognito that was portrayed in the voicemails) – “No, I had no clue about the voicemail. I had never seen that, had never heard about that. All I know about Richie (Incognito) is that he was a great teammate to me, 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. 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.”

(On if he had any sense that there was something wrong in their relationship) – “No, none at all. I think if you would ask John Martin a week before who his best friend on the team was, he would say, Richie Incognito. The first guy to stand up for Jonathan (Martin) when anything went down on the field, any kind of tussle, Richie (Incognito) was the first guy there. When they wanted to hang out outside of football, who was together, Richie (Incognito) and Jonathan (Martin).”

(On how can this be explained) – “I can’t. I’m not in those guys shoes. I can’t explain what’s going on.”

(On if he can envision the two players playing together on this team again) – “That’s out of my hands at this point. I’d welcome any of them back that will come back, that are allowed to come back. It’s not my job to make that decision. At this point I will accept either one of them back.”

(On if he would have intervened if he would have found out about this situation sooner) – “Of course. That’s part of being a leader of this team. You want to step in and help anybody who is dealing with something. If I had any idea that this was an issue, that he was struggling, of course I would have constantly checked on him, ‘How are you doing, how are things going, just making sure you’re ok’. You can never judge another man for what they are going through, everyone deals with something different in life and just to have no idea that this is even going on is tough for me because you can’t help a situation that you didn’t know existed. No one on this team knew it existed. We have a bunch of good guys in this locker room and to be put in a situation where everyone’s attacking the locker room, saying it’s such a bad place, such a bad culture, no leadership to stand up and stop the situation, no one knew there was a situation to be stopped. It’s really tough for us to sit here and hear all of that when we have each other’s backs and I wouldn’t have a problem stopping a situation if it was occurring. Richie (Incognito) didn’t use that type of language, that was on the voice mail and in the locker room he didn’t’ talk to other guys that way, in a derogatory way that was attacking.”

(On if he visited Jonathan Martin at the hospital or have you talked to him and what have you talked about) – “I talked to him when he left. I called him, his phone was off. I texted him and said ‘Hey man I hope everything’s ok, call me if you need anything,’ this was the night that he left. He said, ‘I’m ok man, thanks.’ After the game I texted him saying ‘Hey it wasn’t the same without you out there’, and he said ‘I miss being out there with you guys. Great win,’ and some other stuff.”

(On if he’s spoken to him since the last time) – “I haven’t spoken to him since Friday, no.”

(On if the leadership council has met about this situation) – “We haven’t met about it, no. To meet about something that you didn’t know, it’s in the past. Right now we’re focused on sticking together as a team, having each other’s backs as a team and getting ready to play a football game. At the end of the day, we’re playing a Tampa Bay team on the road on Monday. We have to deal with this yes, but we also have to get ready to play a football game.”

(On if they have talked about this issue as a team) – “Well yes, it’s nonstop. I feel like today’s been much better. Guys aren’t discussing the whole thing like the past few days. Obviously, everyone’s hearing about it. Our phones are blowing up from anyone we’ve ever come in contact about the situation. There has been a lot of chatter about it but, today I think guys are happy to stick to each other, have each other’s backs and get ready to play.”

(On if he feels that the team fully understands the focus and the national attention about bullying and locker room environment) – “There is so much going on. I mean, look at this. There is so much going on. Unless you just sit at home and try and grasp and read every article and watch every newscast, it’s tough to grasp everything that’s blown up. We have an idea of the situation. We saw the situation at hand, so a lot of it is catching us off guard. We didn’t know all of this stuff that’s being thrown out. It wasn’t going on in front of us, so it’s tough.”

(On if he would welcome both guys back) – “It’s tough. Both guys at this point have their rights and wrongs. If they were allowed to come back, if they chose to come back, I’m big on forgiving people. Forgiving people of what they’ve done, getting past that and not crucifying people for their past and moving forward.”

(On if he was every aware of anyone telling someone to toughen up Jonathan Martin) – “No. I was never told that, never heard of that. I just heard of that today, that that concept was being thrown out there, but I have never heard of that before.”

(On if he felt Jonathan Martin needed to be toughened up) – “No. I thought he was a good player, he worked hard, he came in every day. A quiet guy, he never said much. That’s another thing, there were no warning signs, I’ve heard all these warning sings we were supposed to see. He was the same guy all the time. Pretty quiet, just kind of went about his business, joked around here and there but overall a quiet guy. It’s tough to see warning signs when a guy doesn’t change.”

(On how he would describe their friendship) – “I would say, Jonathan (Martin) was like Richie’s (Incognito’s) little brother. The situation, I wasn’t sitting at the table but the whole situation that everyone knows about now, where they stand up just as a joke, they’ve played it on me before. I’ve had the same several times played on me. Right when he was about to come up, Richie (Incognito) said ‘Jonathan is like my little brother,’ and I think that’s an accurate depiction. He gave him a hard time, he messed with him, but he was the first one there to have his back in any situation and it’s a big surprise what’s going on.”

(On when he saw his reaction, what did he think) – “I was shocked. Honestly, I thought he was just making a point. One minute later they said he had left the building. That’s when I knew that it wasn’t just him just trying to go bigger than they went. I don’t judge a guy for any situation that he’s in, but it was definitely a shock.”
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