NFL player apologises after bullying row

Miami Dolphins offensive lineman Richie Incognito apologised Tuesday for remarks made last week after being named the central figure in a National Football League bullying scandal.

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A 144-page report following an investigation that lasted more than three months and included more than 100 interviews found Incognito and two of his teammates guilty of harassing Jonathan Martin and another teammate as well as an assistant trainer.

Incognito had said independent investigator Ted Wells could not define him “in 144 years let alone 144 pages” and said Wells’ probe could not be independent “when the NFL paid the person to do it.”

Incognito offered apologies to Wells, Martin and Dolphins owner Stephen Ross, who came out harshly against the tormenting behaviour after the report found a “pattern of harassment” and vowed changes would be made.

Martin left the team in October and Incognito was suspended in early November when the scandal came to light, featuring voice-mails and text messages that included racial insults and threats of violence, pulling back the curtain on unsavoury aspects of NFL locker rooms.

The report released Friday concluded Incognito’s harassment pushed Martin from the team but also found it was not intended to do so or cause lasting emotional harm.

“I apologise for acting like a big baby the last few days,” Incognito wrote on his Twitter page. “This has all been so much on me and my family. I just want to play football.

“I want everyone to know I’m in good spirits and looking forward to playing again one day.

“I would like to send Jonathan my apologies as well. Until someone tells me different you are still my brother. No hard feelings :)”

“I would like to also apologise to Mr. Ross and Mr. Wells.”

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