Dolphins punish Don Jones for Twitter comments about Michael Sam
The Miami Dolphins cannot catch a break when it comes to its players tweeting controversial comments.
Safety Don Jones has been fined an undisclosed amount and excused from team activities after reacting to video of St. Louis Rams draftee Michael Sam via social media, the team announced Sunday night.
"I want to apologize to Michael Sam for the inappropriate comments that I made last night on social media," Jones said in a statement released by the team. "I take full responsibility for them, and I regret that these tweets took away from his draft moment.
"I remember last year when I was drafted in the seventh round and all of the emotions and happiness I felt when I received the call that gave me an opportunity to play for an NFL team and I wish him all the best in his NFL career.
"I sincerely apologize to Mr. Ross, my teammates, coaches, staff and fans for these tweets. I am committed to represent the values of the Miami Dolphins organization and appreciate the opportunity I have been given to do so going forward."
After witnessing Sam kiss his boyfriend on television, Jones tweeted "omg" and later "horrible" to a fan who asked if the safety was referring to the kiss.
Jones is expected to complete educational training for his comments.
"We were disappointed to read Don’s tweets during the NFL Draft," Dolphins coach Joe Philbin said, also via a statement. "They were inappropriate and unacceptable, and we regret the negative impact these comments had on such an important weekend for the NFL. We met with Don today about respect, discrimination and judgment. These comments are not consistent with the values and standards of our program. We will continue to emphasize and educate our players that these statements will not be tolerated."
Jones’ Twitter account has since been marked as protected, which means the player must approve his followers.
This marks the second time in four days a Dolphins player has stirred controversy on the social media network.
After Miami drafted offensive lineman Ja’Wuan Jones with the 19th overall pick on Thursday, center Mike Pouncey tweeted he was looking forward to gifts from the rookie in reference to last season’s Jonathan Martin-Richie Incognito scandal.
Pouncey shut down his Twitter feed on Friday.