Fantasy Crime League: Greg Hardy Domestic Assault Gets Panthers on the Board

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Despite the fact that it guarantees them a one-year salary that is the average of the top five salaries at their position, generally speaking, NFL players do not like to get hit with the "franchise tag" when they reach free agency.

More often than not, the franchise tag is a placeholder for the two sides, team and player, to work out a long-term deal, but if the two sides don't reach a long-term agreement, then the player plays the one year under the franchise tag salary for his position, and must wait at least one more season for a long-term deal and the guaranteed big bonus money that comes with it.

Carolina defensive end Greg Hardy is one of those players, designated the franchise player for the Panthers. Somehow, I don't think the latest news involving Hardy (who's been in the news before) is going to get the Panthers to the bargaining table any quicker.

Because domestic assault is probably not the best way to go about getting a multi-year extension done:

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- From a Carolina Panthers jersey to a jail jumpsuit, defensive end Greg Hardy spent Tuesday night behind bars, accused of assaulting his girlfriend.

Eyewitness News first confirmed and reported his arrest Tuesday. WSOC-TV first reported the arrest on Twitter. WSOC-TV Twitter page Hardy has been charged with assault on a female and communicating threats. He is expected in court on Wednesday for his first appearance in court.

His arrest comes one day before a Men for Change breakfast sponsored by Safe Alliance, Inc. at Bank of America Stadium. The event raises awareness about domestic violence.

It was scheduled before Hardy's arrest.

Hardy got into a fight with his 24-year-old girlfriend at an uptown apartment on North Tryon Street across from the Belk Theater around 4:20 a.m. Tuesday, according to a Charlotte-Mecklenburg police report.

Police haven't said what the fight was about, but according to a report Hardy's girlfriend, whose name was not included, suffered scratches and bruises but she didn't go to the hospital.

It also said the two had been in a relationship since last September.

"We are very disappointed to learn of the allegations involving Greg and are concerned for all parties as we continue to investigate," a spokesperson for the Panthers said in a statement.

Mike Sexton works with the Mecklenburg County Women's Commission.

He said he has worked with victims from high-profile relationships and this latest case of alleged abuse proves domestic violence doesn't discriminate.

"It sends a message that anybody and everybody can go down this road," Sexton said.

Hardy, nicknamed "The Kraken," was drafted by Carolina in the sixth round of the 2010 NFL Draft and played his college ball at Ole Miss.

Hardy signed a franchise tag tender with the Carolina Panthers in March. He will make $13.1 million next season if he doesn't sign a long-term extension before July 15

During this past week, the big stories post-draft have centered around Rams defensive end Michael Sam, the first openly gay player in league history, and the reaction to his kissing his boyfriend upon hearing the news of the Rams' selecting him in the seventh round. Dolphins lineman Don Jones (who nobody knew outside of Miami before Sunday) was fined and suspended from team activities for tweeting "OMG" and "horrible" after viewing Sam's kiss.

Jones's reaction and punishment were on the front page of many of the big sports sites throughout the day on Monday.

Meanwhile, Hardy's crime is nestled snugly on the NFL subpage, in between stories of Joe Haden's new deal and Andre Johnson's uncertainty about his future with the Texans. So if you're keeping score at home, player tweets a couple of unenlightened (albeit honest) words, and that's front-page news; player assaults girlfriend, buried amidst contract news, business as usual.

That's fairly messed up.

Thankfully, I'm here to keep track of the real crime. Your revised standings...

2014 FANTASY CRIME LEAGUE STANDINGS 1 point .. misdemeanor 3 points .. felony 10 points .. murder

49ERS .. 8 * 3/28/14: 49ers CB Chris Culliver is charged with felony hit and run, misdemeanor reckless driving, and felony possession of brass knuckles. * 4/13/14: 49ers DE Aldon Smith is charged with MISDEMEANOR false report of a bomb threat.

COLTS .. 3 * 3/16/14: Colts owner Jim Irsay is arrested for DUI and possession of a controlled substance (felony)

RAVENS .. 3 * 2/14/14: Ravens RB Ray Rice is charged with third degree assault. * 2/21/14: Ravens WR Deonte Thompson is arrested for suspicion of possession of marijuana. * 3/9/14: Raves OL Jah Reid is arrested on two counts of battery.

BILLS .. 3 * 5/7/14: Bills DT Marcell Dareus is arrested for felony possession of synthetic marijuana

FALCONS .. 1 * 2/18/14: Falcons WR Roddy White is arrested for failing to appear in court.

TITANS .. 1 * 3/20/14: Titans DE Adewale Ojomo is arrested for solicitation of prostitution.

BENGALS .. 1 * 3/31/14: Bengals FB Orson Charles is charged with wanton endangerment.

RAMS .. 1 * 3/29/14: Rams CB Greg Reid is arrested for violating probation.

BEARS .. 1 * 4/21/14: Bears WR Josh Morgan is arrested for simple assault.

PANTHERS .. 1 * 5/13/14: Panthers DE Greg Hardy is arrested for misdemeanor domestic assault.

Listen to Sean Pendergast on SportsRadio 610 from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays. Also, follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/SeanCablinasian.

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