Richie Incognito wants to play again in the NFL, but first he will have to prove he is mentally fit to return. NFL.com's Ian Rapoport reports that Incognito is free to sign a contract, but he cannot be paid or play until he passes a comprehensive evaluation by medical advisors designated by the league and the NFLPA.
Incognito has reportedly visited three different facilities for the treatment of substance abuse and mental health issues in the last few weeks, according to NFL.com. The offensive lineman reportedly checked himself into a treatment facility recently after taking a baseball bat to the front of his car.
He has made no secret about his desire to return to Miami. The Oakland Raiders have also been mentioned as a landing spot. There, he could reunite with offensive coordinator Greg Olson and offensive line coach Tony Sparano, coaches from when Incognito was with the St. Louis Rams and Miami Dolphins, respectively.
Incognito is a free agent this offseason after earning an indefinite suspension last season for his alleged harassment of then-teammate Jonathan Martin. A report released by NFL-appointed independent investigator Ted Wells detailed several instances of perceived bullying, including racist and homophobic text messages, and a "fine book" which docked Martin multiple times with the one word explanation of "pussy."
Along with distancing himself from his baggage, Incognito will also have to prove he is deserving of an NFL roster spot as a player. He earned a positive grade from Pro Football Focus for his eight games at left guard last season, but he has also taken significant time away from the game as a result of the bullying scandal. Incognito will be 31 by the start of the 2014 season, which may make teams hesitant about investing in him long-term.