Greg Hardy Defended by Lawrence Taylor Following Domestic Violence Allegations

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistNovember 16, 2015

Former New York Giants' Lawrence Taylor looks on during a 25 year anniversary celebration at halftime of an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons, Sunday, Sept. 20, 2015, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)
Bill Kostroun/Associated Press

Dallas Cowboys defensive end Greg Hardy is perhaps the NFL's most reviled player at the moment, but he's apparently found an ally in Lawrence Taylor.

The Hall of Fame linebacker defended Hardy on Sunday, saying the Cowboys were right to give him a second chance despite allegations of domestic violence, per Daniel Popper of the New York Daily News:

I like that. I think they needed to give him another chance because it's not clear what happened. It's not really 100% clear what happened. So listen, I think they need to give him a chance.

I think he is going to make the best of that second chance because I'll tell you what, he could have been screwed. A lot of people have been screwed in this league. But he got a do-over, and you got to do the best you can. You got to make the best you can with that do-over.

Hardy, 27, was convicted on domestic violence charges last July after allegedly assaulting ex-girlfriend Nicole Holder. That conviction was overturned when Holder stopped cooperating with investigators prior to a scheduled jury trial. Prosecutors claim Hardy and Holder reached a financial settlement.

Taylor himself is no stranger to off-field issues. As Popper noted, Taylor was suspended 30 days in 1988 after a second failed drug test and has been arrested nine times since his retirement. His most recent arrest came in 2010, when he pleaded guilty to patronizing a prostitute and sexual misconduct.

While Hardy is out of legal trouble and had his 10-game NFL suspension reduced to four games, his past returned to the public eye on Nov. 6 when Deadspin published graphic photos depicting his abuse of Holder. Deadspin's Diana Moskovitz (Warning: Article contains graphic images) obtained photos and police records that show Hardy going into a rage, beating and choking Holder before attempting to depict her as the aggressor.

In the aftermath of that report, Hardy tweeted out an apology for his past:

However, since then, he has been inconsistent in his actions.ย His Twitter feed became a hot-button topic last week when he changed his bio to say, "Innocent until proven guilty-lack of knowledge & information is just ignorance-the unjust/prejudicial treatment of diff categories of people is discrimination," per Bernie Augustine of the New York Daily News.

Despite the controversy, he has stayed in the Cowboys' starting lineup. He was held to one tackle and did not record a sack in Sunday's 10-6 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Dallas is 0-5 in games Hardy has started.

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