Former NFL defensive end Greg Hardy, who was suspended four games for violating the league’s player conduct rule following an allegedly violent incident involving his ex-girlfriend in 2014, says he wants to rebuild his image and get back to the league.
“I’m working to get the Greg Hardy name back in good standings, and for redemption,” he said. “An apologetic, happy comeback. Get to the Hall of Fame.”
Hardy, 28, was arrested for a domestic violence incident from that year with his then girlfriend, Nicole Holder, and originally convicted of the charges before the North Carolina state court was forced to dismiss the case in February 2015 when Holder refused to cooperate. Still, the league found sufficient evidence that Hardy’s behavior in the incident violated NFL policies and suspended him 10 games before it was reduced to four.
“Guilty? I mean, the United States of America said I wasn’t,” Hardy said. “But apologetic, most definitely. I’m sorry for anything I did wrong. I never wanted to do anything wrong.”
Hardy was let go by the Carolina Panthers and signed by the Dallas Cowboys during all his legal issues, but his behavior didn’t seem to get much better. He butted heads with coaches and teammates, missed team meetings and made comments on Twitter that angered the Cowboys brass. They attempted to solve the issue but ultimately let him go in free agency.
Hardy now is on probation for an arrest last year for cocaine possession in Texas, avoiding jail following a plea deal. He was given two years’ probation, community service and fined $500. Now he’s playing in the Spring League and trying to convince an NFL team he’s no longer a problem.
“I’m kind of on the black side of things right now, with the perception of my persona,” he said. “It’s hard to fight the fans. You can’t be right about somebody if you don’t know them — that’s just a basic common decency fact. But nobody wants to attest to that, so I have to show that Greg Hardy is not a [expletive] psychopath. And I say [expletive] because it’s that extreme. I want people to see that, instead of reading and believing the latest stories.”
Hardy had 40 sacks in his NFL career and made the Pro Bowl in 2013, when he registered a career-high 15 sacks.
The Spring League was created in 2016 as an instructional league for football players to display their talent to pro scouts, including those of the NFL. Although it’s not affiliated with the NFL, it uses NFL rules and is comprised of four teams.
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