With all doors to the NFL seemingly closed, former Pro Bowl defensive lineman Greg Hardy is taking his talents indoors, signing with the Richmond Roughriders of the American Arena League, the team announced Friday on its Facebook page.
From the Roughriders Facebook page:
The Richmond Roughriders Announce the Signing of Former Carolina Panthers and Dallas Cowboys Pro Bowl Defensive Lineman Greg Hardy for the 2018 Season.
Playing college football for The The University of Mississippi – Ole Miss, Hardy was drafted by the Carolina Panthers in the 2010 NFL Draft. Hardy was named to the Pro Bowl and Second-Team All-Pro following the 2013 NFL season in which he recorded a career high 15 sacks, which is currently a Panthers single season record.
“The signing of an All Pro Defensive End like Hardy is huge, not just for us and the fans but also for the league (AAL). We as an organization and as a coaching staff look forward to an incredibly competitive season in the American Arena League.”
Richmond Roughriders Owner/GM – Gregg Fornario
Hardy has been no stranger to news in the world of indoor football, last season Hardy was looked at by the now-defunct Salt Lake Screaming Eagles of the Indoor Football League, who let fans vote on if the team should sign him, before they ultimately decided to pass, by a suspiciously close 50.1 to 49.9 percent vote for NO by the fans.
Hardy had his best season in 2013 when he racked up 15 sacks for the Carolina Panthers, making the Pro Bowl. He last played in the NFL in 2015 for the Dallas Cowboys, totaling six sacks in 12 games.
The signing has received mixed reviews on the team Facebook page, with some in support of signing him, and others flat-out saying they won’t support the team with him on it.
Hardy become the second famous defensive lineman to sign with the Roughriders this offseason, the team had previously signed former ‘Last Chance U’ star Ronald Ollie to a contract.
The Roughriders will start their season on March 17 with a road game against the High Country Grizzlies, and will get their first change to see Hardy and Ollie at home on March 31 against the Carolina Energy.