Jonathan Martin created a very positive image of the type of football player who could be during his tenure with the Cardinal. Twice he garnered First-Team All-American honors while he guarded the line for quarterback Andrew Luck. He'd eventually impress scouts enough to push his stock all the way up to being named the number 3 tackle prospect at the 2012 NFL draft.
Once in the NFL, Martin visibly struggled when the injury-ridden Miami Dolphins found themselves continuously shifting Martin from the left and right sides. He started all 16 games his rookie season, and just seven his sophomore season. That sophomore season was when Martin was thrust into the spotlight, and football fans everywhere learned his name. Not for his play, but for the now infamous scandal that involved both him and Richie Incognito. In a series of reports that have seemed to become a regular thing as of late, Ted Wells found that Incognito, John Jerry, and Mike Pouncey harassed Martin and another player simply referred to as "Player A."
The scandal pushed both Incognito and Martin out of Miami.
Martin landed on his feet, inking a deal to return to the Bay Area and play with the San Francisco 49ers. He'd play one season, appearing in 15 games, starting nine at right tackle. After being released by the 49ers, Martin was claimed off waivers by the Carolina Panthers where he was expected to play next season.
Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network reported Martin suffered a back injury this offseason:
And there you have it. It's being reported by the NFL Network that the injury would have sidelined Martin for the entirety of the 2015 season, so he is opting to file his retirement papers instead. He was seen as a depth addition for the Panthers, and was not threatening to win a starting job, so maybe this is the best move for all parties involved.
The former second-round picks career was short, as often is the trend in the NFL these days. But here's to Martin on his next chapter in life.