Since signing a one-year, $11.3 million deal with the Dallas Cowboys in March, Greg Hardy has found himself entangled in one controversy after another. Domestic violence allegations didn't keep Cowboys owner Jerry Jones from signing Hardy in the first place, and reckless comments and actions aren't going to keep Jones from offering Hardy a long-term deal after his one-year contract with the team expires.
"When we initially signed, talked to him, asked him to join the team, it was not only with the idea of a short-term [deal] but a long-term [deal]," Jones told 105.3 The Fan on Tuesday, via the Dallas Morning News. "Relatively speaking, he's a young player and he certainly has the kinds of skills and impact that we want to look to the future with, with the Cowboys."
Jones also doubled down on his defense of Hardy's sideline outbursts during Dallas' 27-20 loss to the Giants on Sunday. Cameras caught Hardy and wide receiver Dez Bryant having a heated exchange, and later on Hardy was seen getting physical with Cowboys special teams coordinator Rich Bisaccia following a Giants 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown.
"That's the kind of thing that inspires a football team," Jones said on Sunday when asked about Hardy's actions, after referring to him as a team leader. ""He's just getting guys ready to play in my view. I don't have any issue with him being involved in motivating or pushing in any part of the football team, because he plays and walks the walk."
The next day it was reported that Hardy had missed the Cowboys' Thursday practice. However, Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett told the media on Monday that no discipline would be issued.
Asked again on Tuesday about Hardy's latest eruptions, Jones reiterated his original stance.
"I don't have any different view than I had Sunday," he said.
Hardy, 27, has recorded three sacks in two games since returning from a four-game suspension doled out as punishment for the domestic violence charges against him. Hardy was initially suspended 10 games, but it was reduced following an appeal.
Jones was criticized after signing Hardy in the offseason and labeled as a defender of domestic violence. He was asked about this on Tuesday.
"I really do understand completely their perspective and they know, I don't need to say it again, in no way is anybody anything but against any type of domestic violence," Jones said. "We won't get into that, that's not the point. We're talking about the sideline, but you're going to go ahead and take me on over to that aspect of it. But the most comments I got on enabling was when we signed him. It looks like you're basically condoning domestic violence, which is not the case."
Hardy was initially convicted of assaulting and threatening to kill his ex-girlfriend, but he appealed the ruling and charges were eventually were dropped after the victim declined to cooperate with authorities during the court appeal. It was later reported that a settlement was reached between Hardy and his accuser.
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