By Zach Walker
If you ever wanted to know what it was like, back in the old cowboy days of the late 1800’s, of how word traveled via the three legged pony express, enthrall yourself in the Greg Hardy appeal process. The appeal was heard during the final week of May, and the league seemed to finally feel the need to rule on this, when Hardy and his camp came out and said that he’ll take any ruling to court that exceeds two games.
The fire was lit, and on July 10th, 42 unbelievably long days after the appeal hearing, the league has dropped the previous ruling of ten games down to just four games. That means for the week five matchup, against the potentially Tom Brady-less New England Patriots, the Cowboys defense will be getting back two very important pieces, in Hardy and suspended linebacker Rolando McClain.
The four game suspension is huge. Six more games of Greg Hardy getting after the quarterback. Six more opportunities to achieve the sack-based incentive milestones in his contract. The Cowboys pass rush can go from a potential havoc during the back half of the season, to a dynamic unit throughout the entire season with reinforcements coming seemingly a half a season earlier than previously anticipated. The “Kraken” would be an unbelievable boost to the young pass rush duo of second round picks: DeMarcus Lawrence and Randy Gregory.
However, this ending to the Hardy appeal has been left open for a potential ‘sequel’ because of word from the Hardy camp. He has threatened to go to court to for any suspension longer than two games. I wonder if he’ll keep his stance now that his suspension is only four games. The easy analysis is that: D’uh, four isn’t two, the two that he has vowed to go to court over, but for any out there who doesn’t think it makes sense to fight for two games, when he just gained six games, it’s just spilled milk at this point right? Wrong, it makes sense, actually it’s all about cents. If Greg Hardy were to win in a lawsuit against the league, and get his suspension reduced, for every game he would win in his favor, would be an additional $578,125 per game for Hardy to soak up.
Now that the Cowboys have the knowledge that they’ll have Greg Hardy for more than half the season, it’s time to go hard after the long-term Dez contract talks, which will deadline on Wednesday July 15 and after that, Dez will be forced to play under the franchise tag.