The Raiders have been heavily linked to free-agent defensive end Greg Hardy, an association they’ve publicly refuted. Owner Mark Davis denied reports that the Raiders were in contract talks with the 26-year-old, who is radioactive following domestic violence charges that kept him out 15 games last season.
There were lingering questions about interest, but general manager Reggie McKenzie squashed them. He said the Raiders are not pursuing Hardy.
“At this point we don’t have any intentions of doing anything with him,” McKenzie said on Saturday evening. “His situation is a delicate one. He has something ongoing with the league also. Anything we do (regarding Hardy) is about information gathering, like we do with all the players.”
Hardy is an elite talent who had 15 sacks in 2013, the last season he played. He was in just one game last year, and spent the rest of the season on the commissioner’s exempt list dealing with a domestic violence issue. He was convicted, but that ruling was overturned on appeal, when the accuser did not cooperate following a financial settlement.
The Raiders are in need of a pass-rushing defensive end, and could go after one in the early portions of the draft. A league source said there is some difference of opinion regarding Hardy, but he is not an option at this time due to his baggage.