CHARLOTTE – With the Baltimore Ravens cutting ties with former running back Ray Rice for domestic violence, the Carolina Panthers need to send a message of their own and cut ties with defensive end Greg Hardy.
Hardy, a former sixth-round pick out of Ole Miss in 2010, has emerged into one of the most feared pass-rushers in the NFL, was found guilty for threatening to kill his girlfriend, Nicole Holder in July.
The Pro Bowl defensive end is in the process of appealing the ruling and his case will not be held until 2015.
Carolina Panthers owner and founder, Jerry Richardson made an impassioned and emotional speech in reference to Hardy’s plight and has decided to stick with his embattled player.
Perhaps Richardson is doing this out of a sense of loyalty, but from a business point of view the Panthers have to send a message that they—like Baltimore—will do the right then and cut Hardy, so that they are not linked to a player charged with assaulting women off the field. Thanks to Rice’s release, a greater focus has been placed on the NFL’s stance on domestic violence towards women, and female fans in general.
Before the Rice and Hardy incidents, the NFL has been rather non-existent in addressing domestic violence. Now, the NFL is in the middle of a public relations and social media hurricane of looking callous, insensitive and hypocritical.
Thanks to TMZ, Rice is out of football, current running back Adrian Peterson being indicted on child abuse charges and commissioner Roger Goodell is on the proverbial hot seat. While it may hurt to cut a player of Hardy’s talents, Carolina needs to worry more about the message they send in allowing a convicted woman-beater such as Hardy to line up on Sundays instead of sacks and tackles for loss.
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