Jonathan Martin, a starting offensive lineman for the Miami Dolphins, has reportedly taken a personal leave of absence, decrying his teammates' bullying as beyond normal, to the point of abusive.
Mr. Martin said the taunting included mocks of his family, Fox Sports reported. Moreover, teammates dubbed him the "Big Weirdo," leading to his charge of "an abusive environment," he said.
He's played for the team for a season and a half. He says he's been bullied that entire time, Fox Sports reported. But the final straw came this week, when he sat down to eat with his teammates and they all stood and left, Fox Sports reported.
Mr. Martin – who's started all 23 games with the Dolphins – missed Thursday's game. The official team injury reported listed him as "out" for illness, and the team hasn't commented further, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.
Meanwhile, teammates say in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that any hazing Mr. Martin has suffered is only in line with what most new recruits go through. And Mr. Martin himself is sending conflicting signals about his status with the team.
In a Facebook post, he wrote: "Happy Halloween! Don't believe everything you read."
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