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Greg Hardy should be ace of Cowboys' DL rotation

IRVING, Texas -- Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli loves to run his line with a rotation.

He doesn't want to tire out one player and leave him ineffective in the fourth quarter when the game is on the line. Last year the Cowboys had seven defensive linemen play more than 200 snaps, led by Jeremy Mincey with 764.

Defensive tackle Tyrone Crawford would have had more if he did not miss a game with a knee injury.

The addition of Greg Hardy could alter Marinelli's approach.

With Hardy scheduled to earn a $750,000 base salary and roughly $578,000 for every game he is on the 53-man roster, the Cowboys want to get their money's worth out of the player. How will getting the proper value on such a highly-paid defensive end? We'll see.

Hardy played 934 snaps in 2013 when he had 15 sacks in 16 games. He played 828 snaps in 2012 when he had 11 sacks in 15 games.

Hardy will be Marinelli's best pass-rusher since he had Julius Peppers with the Chicago Bears. Peppers played 842 snaps in 2012 and had 11.5 sacks. The Bears had eight defensive linemen that year play more than 200 snaps, but Peppers led the way.

Complicating the matter would be a possible suspension. If the NFL docks Hardy a number of games, it eases some of the burden on the cap but would make it even more necessary to play him a ton of snaps in the games he is available.

It's a one-year deal.

The Cowboys were more than willing to use DeMarco Murray as often as possible last season in a contract year, giving him 392 carries during the season to go along with 57 catches.

There makes no sense in keeping Hardy on a pitch count ... err, snap count.