The Greg Hardy photos have been released, and, not surprisingly, nobody seems to care – not the people in power, anyway. The Dallas Cowboys have made statements about not condoning domestic violence. Well, that’s great, but Hardy is still playing on Sundays.
Then again, the photos didn’t tell us anything we didn’t already know.
“What did you think happened that night?” WFAA-TV Dallas sports anchor Dale Hansen said on CBS Sports Radio’s Gio and Jones. “I thought the pictures were disgusting. I thought they were appalling. Quite honestly, some of the photos were a little frightening as well. But I’ve never had any doubt that Greg Hardy beat that woman up that night, and the pictures didn’t change my mind and I don’t think they’ve changed the mind of many other people, either. I don’t know what that says, quite frankly. I thought there would be a little bit more outcry, but certainly not in Texas. There doesn’t seem to be. I haven’t heard from many fans, radio stations, the call-in shows and the like. It doesn’t seem to have changed the opinion of anybody. People who were upset about the signing of Greg Hardy like I was are still upset, and the people who were all in favor of Greg Hardy playing for the Dallas Cowboys are still in favor of Greg Hardy playing for the Dallas Cowboys.”
As Brian Jones pointed out, our general indifference to this incident is more of a societal problem than an NFL problem. Hansen agreed.
“Society, I think, is behind the curve on this,” he said. “I don’t think we’re taking it nearly serious enough. I think my only issue is the NFL has an opportunity to be such a leader in that. I don’t know that we can always hold our pro sport teams responsible for what we’re not willing to do in society, and I don’t think we do nearly enough when it comes to domestic violence. But I just look at our sports teams and I think this is a great opportunity to set such a strong example to young men in this country that if you hit a woman, it will just not be tolerated – and the NFL is not willing to take that stance. They start with Ray Rice and they say, ‘Okay, you knocked her out and you dragged her out of the elevator, so it’s two games.’ Once we saw the actual punch and the actual video, Roger Goodell and the NFL tried to make it stronger, and (Rice has) paid the price. But I think the main reason that he’s paid the price is simply because he’s not good enough anymore. I think if Ray Rice was 24 years old and still able to gain 14-, 1,500 yards, I think he’d be playing in the NFL, much as what we’re seeing with Greg Hardy.”
Worth noting, Hansen said, is that Jones was not interviewed by anyone following Dallas’ 33-27 overtime loss to Philadelphia on Sunday night. Hansen, who has covered the Cowboys for 35 years – and Jones for more than a quarter of a century – can’t recall the last time Jones wasn’t available after a game for an interview. In fact, it may have been a first.
“When the heat comes up a little hotter, he disappears,” Hansen said. “So the bottom line is, unless (Hardy) just does something egregious, outrageous, maybe hits another woman, that might do it. And I absolutely emphasize the word ‘might’ do it. But other than that, I just don’t see any way possible that Jerry Jones would ever decide it’s not worth (having Hardy), and the disturbing part to me is, I don’t think he’s worth it. I feel pretty confident that the Cowboys could be 2-6 and have lost six games in a row if they hadn’t signed Greg Hardy. So he’s not helping the Cowboys win any games.”