This post deals with some sensitive topics. The subject is complex and serious, but at the same time the interview in question clearly shows some attempts at humor, even though many will think they were inappropriate. Please feel free to add your thoughts in the comments section, but remember out site standards and rules.
Greg Hardy spoke to reporters on his first day back at practice with the Dallas Cowboys after serving his four game suspension for domestic violence. In the eyes of many, his comments were completely off base. For some, there is the belief that not only should his suspension not have been reduced from ten games, he should not be allowed to play football at all because of his actions.
Ten games sounds pretty good now, doesn't it? Or, how about the rest of his career?
So now, the Cowboys, always one of the most closely scrutinized franchises in the league, have seen the pass rusher they are pinning so much hope on for the remainder of the season throw gasoline on the fire of his situation. The management and coaches cannot be happy about this. Meanwhile, his teammates have expressed nothing but support for Hardy and pleasure at having him back, sometimes in colorful terms of their own.
DE Jeremy Mincey on getting back Hardy and Rolando McClain: "It’s good to have some SOBs. I am one myself. It’s always good to have an SOB."— Brandon George (@DMN_George) October 7, 2015
The interview is probably something that almost everyone associated with the Cowboys, except apparently Hardy himself, wish had never happened. But it did. Now everyone has to deal with it, including the fans of the team. There have been many, many cases where supporters of a team find themselves with a player they really want to succeed because it means success for the team, but the attitude of almost everyone outside that team's fanbase is one of condemnation. No one can question the horrid aspect of domestic violence, and there is no defense for it.
The public has determined that the only acceptable response from those in Hardy's position is contrition and, above all, saying the "right" things. That is clearly not the course Hardy has taken. He refused to really address the entire issue of domestic violence. Instead he talked about football and getting sacks. And he also threw in some comments about the wife of a certain player he will be facing this Sunday.
"I love seeing Tom Brady, he's cool as crap," Hardy said. "Have you seen his wife? I hope she comes to the game. I hope her sister comes to the game, all her friends come to the game. One of my favorite games of the year, guys."
These words were seen as particularly heinous. It is hard to see them as not being over the line. Is it ever appropriate to talk about how attractive another man's wife is? Maybe his comment was not truly malicious, just a misplaced attempt at humor.
The one thing that does seem clear is that Hardy does not feel any responsibility to toe the line about his past, and plans to play football to the best of his ability. All indications are that he believes in his own mind that he did not do anything deserving of the condemnation he has received. That may be largely true, or just self-delusion. But it is what he is going with. Overlooked in much of the criticism is that the North Carolina legal system basically said in the end that he was not guilty of anything, at least as far as could be proven.
And for us, we are stuck with cheering for him to get to the quarterback and cringing if he makes more highly questionable remarks. Will Hardy be part of the solution as the Cowboys try to fight their way back into the playoffs, or will he become a damaging distraction?
The more inflammatory comments were the ones that got the play in the media, but there was more to the interview. Hardy also said things like:
"I will say that I'm evolving. It comes from the guys around me. I feel like I'm listening more. I'm taking more advice from the leadership and the head guys and the head coach and even the administration. Just the way I take the advice and the way I apply it, that's what's changed."
So who is Hardy? A man who abused a woman, a star player who will lift his team, an irreverent jokester, or a man playing a role to tweak the league he feels unjustly deprived him of over a year of playing time and a considerable amount of money? Maybe some of all of these. You will ultimately have to decide yourself.
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Oct 24-25, 2015
Cowboys-Giants in the beautiful Poconos
|Three awesome Cowboys-centric events!|
|Saturday, October 24
(8:00-10:00 PM): Dinner the night before the game
|Sunday, October 25
(9:00 AM - 1:00 PM): Pre-game brunch
|Sunday, October 25
(4:30-8:30 PM) Cowboys-Giants game, with free buffet
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