Offensive lineman Richie Incognito has been suspended by the Miami Dolphins after a rookie on the team lodged a complaint about bullying and racism.
The senior offensive guard was suspended for “conduct detrimental to the team" while an investigation was launched by the NFL into accusations by representatives of Jonathan Martin, who hasn't been seen in Miami since he stormed out of training last week.
The Dolphins issued the following statement on the matter: “The Miami Dolphins have suspended Richie Incognito for conduct detrimental to the team.
"We believe in maintaining a culture of respect for one another and as a result we believe this decision is in the best interest of the organization at this time.
"As we noted earlier, we reached out to the NFL to conduct an objective and thorough review. We will continue to work with the league on this matter.”
Of Martin the NFL franchise stated: “The Miami Dolphins, including Coach Joe Philbin and Jonathan's teammates, have been in communication with Jonathan and his family since his departure from the club and continue to be in contact.
"Our primary concern for Jonathan is his overall health and well-being. As an organization, we take any accusations of player misconduct seriously. The notion of bullying is based on speculation and has not been presented to us as a concern from Jonathan or anyone else internally.
"The reports that the NFLPA is investigating our players are inaccurate. Additionally, the NFL offered its assistance during this time, which we appreciated and gladly accepted. We will continue to make Jonathan's health and well-being a focus as we do with all of our players."
Incognito is said to have sent various threatening text messages to Martin and left one voicemail containing a racial slur.
He, along with other senior players, are also accused of forcing rookie players to pay for expensive goods to the point of bankruptcy.
According to one report the left tackle was forced to pay $15,000 towards a team trip to Las Vegas that he did not attend - although that has been denied.
Rookies at the Dolphins are paid $390,000-per-year, while incognito is in the final year of an $11 million dollar contract.
Incognito has previously hit out at claims of bullying in the Dolphins dressing room on Twitter - however defensive tackle Jared Odrick has previously posted a picture of a lavish dinner with the caption "Everything tastes better when rookies pay for it".
Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: http://gms.to/writeforgms