Greg Hardy hasn’t agreed to paid suspension, yet

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When it comes to players accused of domestic violence whose cases are still pending, the NFL has discovered plutonium by accident.

Either way, the emerging trend is to suspend the player with pay, via the little-known Exemption/Commissioner’s Permission designation.  It’s catch-all that allows a team to park a player on the sidelines for an indefinite period of time.  And it’s the modern equivalent of the Bucs and Eagles sending Keyshawn Johnson and Terrell Owens, respectively, home with pay.

Because the labor deal no longer allows guys to be sent home with pay, the player has to agree to this approach.  In the case of Vikings running back Adrian Peterson, the player agreed.  In the case of Panthers defensive end Greg Hardy, a source with knowledge of the situation tells PFT that the player hasn’t, yet.

While there’s a good chance he will, keep in mind that Hardy faces evidence that is less clear than the charges pending against Peterson, who essentially admits spanking his son to the point of broken skin.  Hardy, found guilty via a preliminary trial so informal that the state doesn’t even generate a transcript of the proceedings, still has a chance to go to court and to pull out a win before a jury, especially since the standard for a criminal conviction is so high.

Apart from the fact that Hardy may be exonerated is the reality that he’s due to become a free agent in 2015.  If he’s not playing, it becomes harder for Hardy to position himself for a major payday in free agency.  And if he’s ultimately acquitted, that major payday could still come.

Regardless of Hardy’s circumstances, this seat-of-the-pants procedure gives the NFL too easy of a way out of the maze the league has created by caring about what players do when not at work.  Instead of suspending the player with pay before his case ends and then presumably suspending him without pay after he is found legally responsible, the league should mobilize an NTSB-style team of investigators to explore the circumstances and make a quick decision as to whether the player is or isn’t guilty.

If the NFL believes he’s clean, he plays.  If the NFL thinks he did something wrong, he receives punishment.  Either way, the cloud of uncertainty won’t linger over the player, his team, and the league.

29 responses to “Greg Hardy hasn’t agreed to paid suspension, yet

  1. He ought to sit. Make great cash w/o wasting a year on his body. Then do 1 year ‘show me’ contract next year and a new contract the following year. 3 years of 1 year contracts worth serious bills.

    Financially speaking, its the best choice he could ever asked for.

  2. That’s what I keep trying to tell people. None of these other cases, whether it is Adrian Peterson or Ray Rice, are even close to being similar to Greg Hardy. Greg Hardy has kept his innocence while Ray Rice and Adrian Peterson have already admitted guilt. I don’t know why everybody keeps pairing these two cases with Greg Hardy because they are far from the same.

  3. greg hardy is a “tough” guy. Yep, just ask the woman he beat.
    Yeah, ask the coke head, goldigging woman what he did. I’m sure she had a clear head that night.

  4. I have to say the way he carries himself when the cameras are on him with that smug attitude doesn’t do much for his cause. I think you want to present yourself in a better light if you’re going to trial.

  5. Do you all really believe Rice, Peterson and Hardy are the only celebrities who have hit their spouse or spanked their kid? Don’t be so naive! Do you all understand the things that go on in hollyweird. lol

    AA Pro Sports athletes and entertainers (teens and 20’s) are now going to be under intense scrutiny to lead perfect lives. Any misstep and jealous ra.cist and bullies are going to be sending in pictures and videos and calling yellow journalist sites like TMZ for the world to see. While of course others will be able to live unscrutinized because of favoritism. smh

  6. They can always cut him. Yes, they still have to pay him, but they have to pay him not matter what. Maybe if he gets convicted, they can sue and try to get it back, but my guess is the franchise tag makes it nearly impossible.

  7. Just looking ahead, I could see the NFL eventually coming up with a “book” that they could throw at players accused of domestic violence. And to appease everyone and their dog it will be a big and punishing “book”.

    One thing we’ve heard on multiple occasions is the “he said, she said” aspect of this type of offense and it’s not unheard of for a woman to make an accusation just to screw with their significant other. (I am not saying any of the cases currently are of that nature)

    So, NFL players beware of the future. Should a spouse or girlfriend decide that they’ve been jilted or the most overused term in the world, “disrespected”, they could cry wolf and have the league unleash the “book” on their noggin’ and the result could be career ending.

    My advice is to become celibate for the duration of your career…….

  8. For the betterment of the league he needs to agree. Keeping it in the headlines because for selfish reasons doesn’t help.
    I promise to click the story that comes up if he’s not guilty after the trial, and he can then slam those who he thinks deserve it.

  9. A judge viewed the evidence and found the guy guilty. AP hasn’t even been before a fact-finder yet. the evidence may not be as “clear”, but the judicial decision couldn’t be more clear. AP absolutely should be suspended, but Hardy, who is one step further down the due process ladder, deserves it infinitely more.

  10. When I pulled the fire alarm back in high school the principal didn’t ask me if I agreed to be suspended.

    I think the situation you’re thinking of is your parents didn’t hold you out of school as discipline when you pulled the fire alarm.

    The Panthers are essentially suspending him with pay. The league has no say in this. If he doesn’t agree to it, the NFLPA might have something to say about it, though.

  11. Why is it that the testimony that Greg Hardy’s victim was tossed onto a horizontal surface loaded with guns seems to be glossed over?

    If Roger Goodell wants to make an impact, he should create a barrier to playing in the NFL that deals with the ownership of arsenals by his players.

    Has the league forgotten the horrifying Jovan Belcher murder-suicide from a couple of years ago?

    Goodell should remember that every time he preaches that playing in the NFL is a privilege rather than a right, he can recommend to the owners any and all standards he deems appropriate to “protect the shield”.

    Making it harder for an unbalanced player to murder another human being seems to be something to consider.

  12. Way to really stand tough and pay these guys NFL.

    And by that I mean way to do absolutely nothing but continue to protect and pay criminals.

  13. they should be suspended with out pay until they are proven innocent.

    then said pay can be funded to the player after the whole mess is worked out.

    why pay a guilty man until until he is proven guilty?

    and if he is not guilty then he can be reimbursed for the time he was “on leave with pay”

    simple as that.

    if the player is actually guilty and gets his contract revoked, why pay him up until then?

  14. Paid suspension.Thats some punishment!Starting hitting them in their wallets and maybe they will change their ways.

  15. So let’s say the NFL creates this “NTSB-style” team as suggested. To what standards would they have to adhere? And who’s going to ensure they adhere to those standards and make sure their decisions aren’t influenced in any way (i.e. $$$).

    Certainly not Goodell, right?

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