Greg Hardy assault photos: More damning proof of NFL priorities Notorious domestic abuser Ray Rice is still unemployed after footage emerged last season of him decking his then-fiancÃ©e (now-wife). But don't think for a moment the two events are as related as they might seem â Rice is more than likely jobless because his production had tailed off, not because of any moral code within the NFL.
If Rice was as good as he once was, instead of on the wrong side of his peak as a running back, he'd still be playing. Look no further than Greg Hardy of the Dallas Cowboys for proof.
See also: The NFL fined a player for trying to raise awareness of domestic violence
Hardy was arrested and charged a year and a half ago with assaulting and threatening a woman named Nicole Holder, his girlfriend at the time. He was convicted on domestic violence in a 2014 bench trial, but appealed in hopes of receiving a jury trial.
In February of this year, Holder stopped cooperating with prosecutors and the case was thrown out. Hardy is believed to have settled financially out of court with Holder, leading her to cease cooperating. This week, a judge expunged the charges from Hardy's record.
That means â as far as Hardy's official record, at least â the incident never happened.
Disturbing photos and details tell a different story.
Deadspin's Diana Moskovitz obtained police reports, interview transcripts and photographic evidence from Hardy's case to put together the most complete picture yet of what actually happened between him and Holder months ago. The resulting image is not pretty.
This is why NFL star Greg Hardy was arrested for assaulting his ex-girlfriend https://t.co/8OZijp2R6F pic.twitter.com/pj3NAo4nrd
â Deadspin (@Deadspin) November 6, 2015
There are photographs showing Holder's bruised body. There are troubling recollections about her tumultuous relationship with Hardy. There are chilling accounts of the night in question, including this transcript of a conversation between Holder and an investigating detective:
Image: DeadspinIn short, the incident comes off as even more scary â and potentially even more harmful â than the punch by Rice that was caught on surveillance video.
A tale of two talents
Remember this guy? Image: Nick Wass/Associated PressHardy played in the first game of the 2014 season, then was suspended for the remainder of the year as the league scrambled to clean up its image in the wake of the Rice scandal.
Rice is a running back who, at 28 years old, happens to be about the age that players at his position begin to dramatically tail off. Hardy, however, is in his prime and capable of being among the league's most dominant defensive players when at his best.
In other words, while Rice remains unemployed, Hardy was signed to a one-year contract worth up to $13.1 million by the Dallas Cowboys in March.
In April, Hardy was suspended four 10 games of the 2015 season â a punishment later reduced to four games. Of the 19 total games he missed over the 2014 and 2015 seasons as his case was resolved, Hardy received full payment for 15 of them.
He's now starting for the Cowboys and team owner Jerry Jones last month deemed him âone of the real leaders on this team.â
Just further proof that, in the NFL, talent is all that really matters â despite whatever moral posturing you may see.
And then there's William Gay
Behold his $5,787 pair of shoes. Image: G. Newman Lowrance/Associated PressWilliam Gay of the Pittsburgh Steelers, meanwhile, is a much less famous player than Hardy. But he, too, has a connection to domestic violence. Gay's mother was killed by his stepfather when he was seven years old.
In a recent game, Gay wore purple cleats to honor his mother and raise awareness of domestic violence. (Purple is the rallying color for domestic violence survivors, much like pink for breast cancer.)
The NFL fined Gay $5,787 for a uniform code violation.
Greg Hardy is expected to start for Dallas against the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday, a game for which he'll be paid more than $500,00.
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