Antrel Rolle on Richie Incognito: ‘Jonathan Martin just as much to blame’

Antrel Rolle Giants
Giants safety Antrel Rolle places some blame on Jonathan Martin in the Miami hazing situation. Credit: Getty Images

The NFL’s “tough guy” locker room culture is under the microscope this week and all the typical “how-in-the-world-could-this-ever-happen!!!???,” overreacting media types outside of the sports world are weighing in.

While most will immediately dismiss New York Giants safety Antrel Rolle’s comments to WFAN sports radio Tuesday as ridiculous, there remains a segment of the population that believes it was up to Jonathan Martin, at some point, to stick up for himself when he was bullied by fellow lineman Richie Incognito. Particularly when his wallet come into play.

Here’s a transcript of Rolle’s interview with Joe Benigno and Evan Roberts on WFAN:

Benigno: Is this an issue in the NFL in your mind right now, [hazing] as a kind of right of passage?

Rolle: Is it an issue in the NFL? Absolutely not. I think this incident in its own, I think it has it’s own problem, it has it’s own spin on it, pretty much. I’m not sure exactly what has taken place down there. I do understand that once you get a hold of something it can have all kinds of twists and turns on it, so I’m not actually sure of what the actual thing was, but hazing is hazing. You’re gonna go through at the collegiate level, you’re going to go through it at the professional level. But once it gets beyond that point and once it becomes a personal thing, that’s when the problem seeps in. As players and teammates, it’s extremely important that you respect one another. It doesn’t matter if it’s a rookie, it doesn’t matter if it’s a 10-year vet or a 10-time Pro Bowler. Respect is a must within the locker room.

Roberts: Whether you were the veteran or the younger player, was there ever a time where it may have crossed the line?

Rolle: Absolutely not. I can’t say that I have been a part of it. To be honest with you, with my tenure here in the [NFL], I haven’t really been through much, even as a rookie. I think the most I’ve had to do is carry pads, pay for dinners. I got thrown in the cold tub once, twice, maybe three times. Other than that, it’s all about just holding your own and understanding that you’re gonna go through those things as a rookie. And, you know, as long as it’s not taken to a personal level, it’s fine and it’s accepted. But at the same time, when things get out of hand, as we’ve seen with things down in Miami, that’s when things need to take a different shift.


Benigno: You said that when you were a rookie you had to pay for dinners and these things. It’s come out now that apparently Martin had to pay $15,000 for some trip to Las Vegas for the team, he didn’t even go on the trip, he just basically paid it. If a situation like that happened with you, Antrel, would you just pay the money and say, that’s the end of it? To me, that kind of bothers me a little bit, especially with that amount of money being involved for a rookie.

Rolle: Well first of all, no, something like would never ever happen to someone like myself, because I wouldn’t allow it to happen. I think that’s something that people really need to understand and look at. Was Richie Incognito wrong? Absolutely, but I think the other guy is just as much to blame as Richie cause he allowed it to happen. And at this level, you’re a man. You know, you’re not a little boy. You’re not a freshman in college, you’re a man. There’s no way that another man is gonna make me pay for something that I choose not to pay for. Like when I was a rookie, I had to pay for a team dinner. It probably cost me, five-10 thousand dollars, but then again I was a first round pick so it was expected. But for this guy, supposedly he’s an undrafted guy [Editor’s note: Martin was actually a second round pick by the Dolphins in 2012]. For one – me being a veteran player – I’m not putting something of that expense on that player … Like I said, Richie Incognito, is he wrong? Absolutely. But I think the other guy is just as much to blame because he’s allowed it to happen.

Roberts: Do you think when he goes back into a locker room, he’s going to have issues because this is now public and he’s a part of why this became public?

Rolle: No, I don’t think he’s gonna have any issues. Because this football league is not built on men who bully other men. I think this is just an incident on its own. Hopefully he’s able to bounce back and recover from this and take awareness because, you know, you’re a grown ass man, you need to stand up for yourself. You know, there’s no punking that should be going on in the NFL. Hazing is one thing, bullying is another.

Click here to listen to the full interview from Nov. 5


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Florida man charged with murdering son to play…

A Florida man annoyed that his 16-month-old crying son was preventing him from playing video games suffocated the toddler, police said on Friday.

International

Powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake rattles Mexico

A powerful earthquake struck Mexico Friday, shaking buildings and sending people running into the street, although there were no reports of major damage.

News

OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…

Local

Oval oasis: Summer of fun kicks off this…

A bold partnership between the Fairmount Park Conservancy and the city's Parks and Recreation Department is kicking off this weekend with family activities re-activating this unused public space.

Entertainment

Whoopi Goldberg makes her debut as marijuana columnist

"It helps my head stop hurting, and with glaucoma your eyes ache, and she takes the ache out. It's wonderful," she said.

The Word

Kate Middleton made fun of Prince William's bald…

Kate Middleton and Prince William are in Sydney, Australia, right now, and it sounds like that brash Aussie sense of humor might be rubbing off.

The Word

Is Tom Cruise dating Laura Prepon?

"Mission: Impossible" star Cruise is said to be dating Laura Prepon, star of "Orange is the New Black."

Television

'Scandal' recap: Season 3, Episode 18, 'The Price…

Sally is Jesus, Olivia caused global warming, and Mellie's still drunk. Let's recap the Scandal finale. A church full of Washington insiders is about to…

MLB

Jimmy Rollins is key to Phillies success

When John Kruk was asked about what the Phillies need to contend for a playoff berth, the ESPN analyst said Jimmy Rollins needs to play like a MVP again.

MLB

Ben Revere lifts Phillies to avoid sweep

Ben Revere came through with a two-out RBI single against Atlanta’s tough lefthander Alex Wood.

NBA

Season wrap: 76ers make the grade

The 76ers opened the 2013-14 season with a victory over the Miami Heat. The Sixers closed the season with a win at Miami.

NBA

Fantasy basketball: Finding next year's NBA studs

Before we put the 2013-14 fantasy basketball season to bed, it’s worth thinking about next year’s breakouts while they’re fresh in our mind.

Tech

VIDEO: 'Vein-scanning' may become the future of paying

Designed to make transactions quicker and easier, the technology works by scanning the unique vein patterns in each person's palm.

Tech

#FollowFriday: 10 of the smartest Twitter accounts

Spending lots of time on Twitter? You might as well learn something. Here are some of the smartest accounts to follow.

Style

Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.

Wellbeing

Why is dance cardio taking off in NYC?

Instructors at some of the city's hottest classes explain why.