Richie Incognito Must Pass Evaluation To Play
By Allen Kim
Richie Incognito is out of treatment and ready to return to the NFL, but he still has a long process ahead of him before he’s able to do so.
NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reports that while Incognito is able to sign a contract with a team, he cannot be paid or play before undergoing a comprehensive medical evaluation by NFL-NFLPA designated medical advisors. Commissioner Roger Goodell must then review their report and recommendation before reinstating him.
Incognito has said that his goal is to return to the Miami Dolphins, but that’s nothing more than a pipe dream at this point. The Dolphins are trying to distance themselves as far as possible from the entire Jonathan Martin-Incognito scandal, and bringing Incognito back would derail any and all attempts to repair the team’s image.
Incognito also made it clear that he would play for the Oakland Raiders, but it’s too early to tell if they would even be interested. Oakland is in need of some offensive line help, so it’s certainly not out of the question that they sign him.
"I'm 100 percent into that," Incognito said of playing for the Raiders. "I think that would fit my personality the best. It makes so much sense. I know (offensive coordinator Greg) Olson and (offensive line coach Tony) Sparano, and I'm a loyal guy, and I'd love to play for them again. And, of course, the Raiders have that aura."
Whoever signs Incognito must be prepared for whatever potential baggage that he may bring with him. He’ll likely find work somewhere, but it’s hard to imagine him getting more than a one-year offer. Any team that signs him will assuredly build in clauses that will protect the team in case there’s any sort of incident.