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Carolina Panthers deactivate Greg Hardy, pending jury trial

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Carolina Panthers deactivate Greg Hardy, pending jury trial
DE Greg Hardy among #Panthers inactives for home opener vs. Detroit: http://t.co/C2rK4Tbj3X
CHARLOTTE, NC - AUGUST 08: Greg Hardy #76 of the Carolina Panthers watches from the bench during the fourth quarter of a loss to the Buffalo Bills at Bank of America Stadium on August 8, 2014 in Charlotte, North Carolina. Buffalo won 20-18. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
Carolina Panthers defensive end Greg Hardy walks into the Mecklenburg County Courthouse on Tuesday, July 15, 2014 in Charlotte, N.C. Hardy is scheduled to be in court to face charges that he beat up his ex-girlfriend during an altercation at his residence in May. (Jeff Siner/Charlotte Observer/MCT via Getty Images)
Carolina Panthers defensive end Greg Hardy walks into the Mecklenburg County Courthouse on Tuesday, July 15, 2014 in Charlotte, N.C. Hardy is scheduled to be in court to face charges that he beat up his ex-girlfriend during an altercation at his residence in May. (Jeff Siner/Charlotte Observer/MCT via Getty Images)
CHARLOTTE, NC - JANUARY 12: Greg Hardy #76 of the Carolina Panthers runs onto the field during player introductions against the San Francisco 49ers during the NFC Divisional Playoff Game at Bank of America Stadium on January 12, 2014 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
CHARLOTTE, NC - DECEMBER 15: Greg Hardy #76 of the Carolina Panthers against the New York Jets during play at Bank of America Stadium on December 15, 2013 in Charlotte, North Carolina. The Panthers won 30-20. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
CHARLOTTE, NC - DECEMBER 15: Greg Hardy #76 of the Carolina Panthers against the New York Jets during play at Bank of America Stadium on December 15, 2013 in Charlotte, North Carolina. The Panthers won 30-20. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA - AUGUST 28: Defensive lineman Greg Hardy #76 of the Carolina Panthers looks on from the sideline during a preseason game against the Pittsburgh Steelers at Heinz Field on August 28, 2014 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The Panthers defeated the Steelers 10-0. (Photo by George Gojkovich/Getty Images)
CHARLOTTE, NC - DECEMBER 22: CHARLOTTE, NC - DECEMBER Drew Brees #9 of the New Orleans Saints is sacked by Greg Hardy #76 of the Carolina Panthers at Bank of America Stadium on December 22, 2013 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
CHARLOTTE, NC - JANUARY 12: Frank Gore #21 of the San Francisco 49ers is tackled by Greg Hardy #76 of the Carolina Panthers in the fourth quarter during the NFC Divisional Playoff Game at Bank of America Stadium on January 12, 2014 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
CHARLOTTE, NC - NOVEMBER 18: Greg Hardy #76 of the Carolina Panthers celebrates after a play against the New England Patriots at Bank of America Stadium on November 18, 2013 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
Greg Hardy (76) of the Carolina Panthers sacks Tom Brady (12) of the New England Patriots during first-quarter action at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, N.C., on Monday, Nov. 18, 2013. (Jeff Siner/Charlotte Observer/MCT via Getty Images)
CHARLOTTE, NC - SEPTEMBER 22: Greg Hardy #76 of the Carolina Panthers during their game at Bank of America Stadium on September 22, 2013 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Carolina Panthers defensive end Greg Hardy (76) and St. Louis Rams guard Harvey Dahl (62) get into a skirmish during fourth-quarter action at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, North Carolina on Sunday, October 20, 2013. Panthers won, 30-15. (Jeff Siner/Charlotte Observer/MCT via Getty Images)
CHARLOTTE, NC - AUGUST 09: Greg Hardy #76 of the Carolina Panthers against the Chicago Bears during a preseason NFL game at Bank of America Stadium on August 9, 2013 in Charlotte, North Carolina. The Panthers won 24-17. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
The Carolina Panthers' Greg Hardy, right, pressures Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Nick Foles into an interception during the first half in preseason action at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on Thursday, August 15, 2013. (David T. Foster III/Charlotte Observer/MCT via Getty Images)
Dallas Cowboys defensive end Greg Hardy laughs with a young fan as the team signs autographs for military members and families after Cowboys' arrival at Naval Base Ventura County at Point Mugu for training camp in Oxnard, Calif., on Tuesday, July 28, 2015. (Paul Moseley/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/TNS via Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - OCTOBER 11: Defensive end Greg Hardy #76 of the Dallas Cowboys on the sidelines before a game against the New England Patriots at AT&T Stadium on October 11, 2015 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
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The Carolina Panthers have deactivated defensive end Greg Hardy, who's awaiting trial on domestic violence charges.

The Panthers made the announcement on Twitter pretty inconspicuously, at first simply including Hardy among the list of inactive players for their game Sunday against the Detroit Lions, before posting a separate tweet.

This comes during a time of high public scrutiny for the NFL and its commissioner, Roger Goodell, over the league's handling of domestic violence incidents involving Ray Rice and Vikings running back Adrian Peterson.

Hardy was found guilty in July of assaulting his former girlfriend and threatening to kill her. Hardy appealed and a jury trial is currently set for November 17.

Nevertheless, the decision not to play Hardy did come as a surprise, despite the external pressures on the team.

Carolina Panthers Deactivate Greg Hardy, Pending Jury Trial


"Because on Friday, Ron Rivera, the head coach said that he was going to start on Sunday, that everything looked good in practice, that they were just going to stay with their plan to let the legal process play out and that's the only thing they could do," ESPN's Panthers reporter, David Newton, said.

Newton pointed to the Minnesota Vikings' decision to deactivate Adrian Peterson on Friday as a possible reason the Panthers felt the need to act.

Peterson turned himself in to authorities Saturday, after being indicted on a charge of "reckless or negligent injury to a child," before posting the $15,000 bail, according to Fox Sports.

Although Hardy was deactivated Sunday, ESPN's Adam Schefter pointed out he'll still be receiving his weekly paycheck of more than $770,000.

The Carolina Panthers have not announced whether Hardy will face further actions from the team after his deactivation.

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