An odd offseason for free agent offensive guard Richie Incognito took another interesting turn.
Earlier on Tuesday, Minnesota Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer was asked in a press conference about the team’s reported interest in signing Incognito given the number of injuries on the offensive line.
“No interest and totally false,” Zimmer said. “Tweet that.”
Incognito responded and posted screenshots of a text message chain he claimed were to late Vikings offensive line coach Tony Sparano, who died July 22 of heart disease.
“Mike Zimmer is a (expletive) LIAR,” Incognito posted on Twitter, adding that he “just released the screen grabs of my conversations with Coach Sparano #facts.”
Incognito claimed that Sparano wrote: “Wish I could get u (sic) going , never know.”
Incognito responded, according to his screenshot, by saying, “You know I would love t (sic) play for you. You guys have a great situation. Zimmer is the man. I just want to work coach. That’s all. I’m chasing a (expletive) championship. (Expletive) money! I saved all mine.”
The back-and-forth began when Incognito told TMZ Sports last week he had fielded calls from the Vikings and the Seahawks.
“I’m mulling all options right now,” Incognito told TMZ. “I’ve had calls from Minnesota, Seattle, I really just don’t want to go to training camp, so we’ll see.”
Incognito later deleted the tweets and apologized to Zimmer, saying he's still dealing with the loss of Sparano.
"I’ll be the first to admit it. I’ve been a bit off the reservation lately. I’ve been a little stressed. There isn’t an off switch for savage mode to regular life," he later tweeted.
Incognito had agreed to restructure his contract with the Buffalo Bills, for whom he had played from 2015-17, but later said he wished to retire. Then, after expressing his desire to return to football, he unretired and asked the Bills to release him, which they did in May.
A few days after his release, Incognito was involved in an altercation with another man in a Florida gym and was later detained and placed under a psychiatric hold under a provision of Florida’s Baker Act.
Incognito, 35, has logged 11 seasons in the NFL for the Rams, Bills and Dolphins, where he played under Sparano.