Dallas Cowboys defensive end Greg Hardy officially returned from his four-game suspension Monday, and he didn't waste any time making headlines, as he took aim at New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady.
The 2-2 Cowboys will host the undefeated Pats on Sunday, and there is little doubt Dallas will need to put some pressure on Brady in order to have a chance at pulling off the victory. Hardy will play a key role in that regard, and he fully intends to make Brady uncomfortable in Week 5, according to Jon Machota of the Dallas Morning News:
Though going up against Brady usually isn't an ideal scenario for opposing defenders due to the quarterback's penchant for picking apart defenses, Hardy is looking forward to it.
The defender went on to bring Brady's wife, model Gisele Bundchen, and sister-in-law into the discussion on Wednesday, per Brandon George of the Dallas Morning News:
The Patriots provided Brady's thoughts on Hardy's comments:
I'm just getting ready to play. I'm focused on my job. He's a great player. It takes a lot of different things to handle a guy like that. He's been a great player since he's been in the league. We're going to have to prepare for him and be ready for all the different types of moves that he's got. They have a good D-line anyway. They count on getting pressure from their front four to get to the quarterback.
I don't really care about his personal feelings.
One can only assume the 27-year-old pass-rusher is attempting to get in Brady's head, but those tactics generally don't seem to work against the four-time Super Bowl winner.
Along with Hardy's comments concerning Brady, he expressed a great deal of excitement about getting back on the field and playing in his first regular-season game since Week 1 last year, according to George:
Hardy's choice of words was questionable, to say the least, as he was placed on the commissioner's exempt list for nearly the entire 2014 campaign after his ex-girlfriend accused him of domestic violence and throwing her on a couch covered in guns.
The charges against Hardy were later dismissed when the accuser did not show up for a hearing.
“Well, we just addressed it immediately," head coach Jason Garrett said on Thursday, according to Clarence Hill of the Dallas Morning News. “That’s not how we want to operate as an organization. Players and coaches in our organization understand that. We want to distinguish ourselves with our play, not with what we say. We want to define ourselves with what we do. ... Greg understands that now. That’s how we want to proceed going forward."
Some of Hardy's comments in his first contact with the media since getting reinstated were bizarre, but if he returns to the form that saw him register 15 sacks for the Carolina Panthers two years ago and helps the Cowboys knock off the Patriots, then fans of America's Team will likely have no problem dealing with his trash talk.
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