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How Greg Hardy became the NFL’s latest headache


Photo courtesy of Parker Anderson/Flickr

A case hidden behind the shadows of Ray Rice and Darren Sharper, Greg Hardy’s sexual assault and domestic violence allegations resurfaced in the media this past weekend. Sports news outlet Deadspin released official police interview transcripts, photos and the NFL hearing transcripts regarding the case. Hardy was originally convicted on the charges of domestic violence against ex-girlfriend Nicole Holder, however said charges were later dismissed when Hardy appealed and Holder refused to cooperate with authorities.

At the time of the May 2014 incident, Greg Hardy was a standout defensive end with the Carolina Panthers, who did not sign him again for the 2015 season. The Dallas Cowboys picked him up in March, agreeing to a one-year, multi-million-dollar contract. This past April, the NFL punished Hardy with a ten game suspension, which was later reduced to four games due to an appeal from the player’s association. The appeal was won because of a change in the NFL’s policy for offenders. Essentially, the NFLA argued that Hardy should be punished under the current format, not the previous one.

Wednesday morning, Greg Hardy changed his Twitter bio to the following: “Innocent until proven guilty — lack of knowledge & information is just ignorance — the unjust/prejudicial treatment of diff categories of people is discrimination.” Later on in the day, after being addressed by Cowboys Coach Jason Garrett, Hardy again changed his bio.

Although Hardy’s misbehavior casts a negative shadow on the Cowboys, coach Jason Garrett still stands by him; “I think the biggest thing we try to do with any player is just address things when they come up and address them in-house,” Garrett told USA Today. “We deal with things inside these walls, and then we move forward.”

Now with the evidence as public knowledge, the League has made headlines yet again for domestic violence. The NFL would need another reason to punish Hardy since he cannot be suspended twice for a single and completed charge. It will be interesting to see how the League follows up on Hardy’s case; especially when his reputation impacts their industry as a whole. Public outrage has spread to other sports league, as on Wednesday night ESPN NBA announcer Jeff Van Gundy criticized Dallas fans (While covering a Dallas NBA game) by saying; “I would like…the Dallas fans to acknowledge the sheer lunacy and absurdity that they’re booing DeAndre Jordan tonight, and they’ll be cheering someone like Greg Hardy on Sunday.”[i]



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How Greg Hardy became the NFL’s latest headache