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Bullied former NFL lineman Jonathan Martin admits to suicide attempts in heartfelt Facebook post

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Did Richie Incognito Ruin Jonathan Martin's Career?


By JOHN DORN

Last month, NFL offensive lineman Jonathan Martin, then in Carolina Panthers training camp, announced that he was retiring from football. He cited a back injury that would've required surgery. Martin confirmed today what the general public could've easily surmised: The injury was only part of the issue.

Martin and then-teammate Richie Incognito were involved in last year's infamous bullying scandal, which featured a vulgar voicemail from Incognito to Martin and a complete record of text messages between the two -- some including Incognito, a white player, calling Martin the N-word.

Incognito contested that their relationship was playful, with teammates likening the two to brothers. Martin eventually left the Miami Dolphins in the beginning of the 2013 season -- his second NFL season, after starting all 16 games as a rookie -- and eventually was granted a trade to the San Francisco 49ers, where he spent last season.

Incognito was dismissed from the Dolphins shortly after the scandal broke loose, just recently signing a contract with the Buffalo Bills for this season.

In a Facebook post early Wednesday, Martin revealed the full story behind his unfortunate NFL story. After internal struggles for seemingly his entire life, he's trying to help others battling similar issues.



The entire essay, which he also tweeted, is a brutally honest look behind the doors Martin has kept closed through his entire time in the public eye. The most crushing bit undoubtedly being the revelation that he attempted suicide "on multiple occasions." He says he drank too much and started smoking marijuana to help ease his internal pain.

Martin's case is one that shows us how trivial the game of football can be when dealing with actual human beings. After spending his entire life making sacrifices for the game he loved, he wound up sacrificing football to finally find the peace that will keep him alive.

That's more important than any job in professional sports -- and anything at all.

See photos of Martin throughout his career:
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Bullied former NFL lineman Jonathan Martin admits to suicide attempts in heartfelt Facebook post
INDIANAPOLIS, IN - FEBRUARY 25: Offensive lineman Jonathan Martin of Stanford looks on during the 2012 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium on February 25, 2012 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
DAVIE, FL - JULY 27: Jonathan Martin #71 of the Miami Dolphins looks on during practice at the Miami Dolphins training facility on July 27, 2013 in Davie, Florida. (Photo by Ron Elkman/Sports Imagery/ Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - SEPTEMBER 07: Tackle Jonathan Martin #71 of the San Francisco 49ers during the NFL game against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium on September 7, 2014 in Arlington, Texas. The 49ers defeated the Cowboys 28-17. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CA - DECEMBER 7: Jonathan Martin #71 of the San Francisco 49ers sits on the bench as the final seconds tick away during the game against the Oakland Raiders at O.co Coliseum on December 7, 2014 in Oakland, California. The Raiders defeated the 49ers 24-13. (Photo by Michael Zagaris/San Francisco 49ers/Getty Images)
ST. LOUIS, MO - OCTOBER 13: Jonathan Martin #71 of the San Francisco 49ers stands for the anthem on the field prior to the game against the St. Louis Rams at the Edward Jones Dome on October 13, 2014 in St. Louis, Missouri. The 49ers defeated the Rams 31-17. (Photo by Michael Zagaris/San Francisco 49ers/Getty Images)
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