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For Incognito himself, the main issue would likely be his future NFL playing career. The NFL players’ union announced Thursday that Incognito has filed a grievance over his indefinite suspension by the Dolphins. The union statement says that Incognito is requesting an expedited hearing so he can resume playing football immediately.

Tamara Lave, a law professor at the University of Miami, said the current national focus on bullying and hazing in schools and at the workplace would figure in Martin’s favor should he take legal action. Especially, she said, because he is a physically imposing NFL player _ 6-foot-5, 312 pounds _ who is typically perceived as having few weaknesses.

“The fact that you have a 300-pound man who feels so threatened and uncomfortable that he leaves, that’s an indication of how serious it was,” Lave said.

From the criminal standpoint, former prosecutor David S. Weinstein said it’s possible but not likely that Incognito could be charged with extortion if he made threats to force Martin to pay the $15,000 for the Vegas trip. Another option would be written threats to do bodily harm, based on Incognito’s texts to Martin making threats about his mother.

“However, I don’t really see the (state prosecutors) going after Incognito, but I could be wrong,” Weinstein said.

Florida does have an anti-hazing law, but Jarvis said it applies only to educational institutions and not adult workplaces.


AP Football Writer Barry Wilner contributed to this story.


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