The New York Jets’ Mecole Hardman era has come to a quick conclusion
After only six weeks, Mecole Hardman’s time with the New York Jets is over. According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Jets are trading Hardman back to the Kansas City Chiefs. The deal is centered around a late-round pick swap. New York is sending a 2025 seventh-round pick to Kansas City in exchange for a 2025 sixth-round pick.
Comp update: The Jets are sending WR Mecole Hardman and a 2025 7th to the Chiefs for a 2025 6th, per source. https://t.co/z248dNy5HN
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) October 18, 2023
Hardman, who signed with the Jets in March on a one-year, $4 million deal, found himself in the Jets’ doghouse throughout his short tenure with the team. Despite Jets head coach Robert Saleh commenting in the offseason that they felt Hardman had untapped potential, Hardman ended up playing just 28 offensive snaps in five games and was even chosen as a healthy scratch in one game. He was targeted three times and caught one pass for six yards.
Now, Hardman returns to the team that drafted him 56th overall in the second round of the 2019 draft. In four seasons with the Chiefs, Hardman caught 151 passes for 2,088 yards and 16 touchdowns. He also recorded 20 rush attempts for 125 yards and two touchdowns.
The Chiefs are a team in dire need of wide receiver help. Kansas City was able to overcome the loss of Tyreek Hill to win the Super Bowl in 2022, but so far this year, Kansas City has been plagued by poor production from the wide receiver position. Andy Reid’s squad appears to be hoping that Hardman can provide a spark.
As for the Jets, the emergence of undrafted rookie Xavier Gipson appears to be the primary reason Hardman was viewed as expendable. Hardman was mainly signed to serve as a jet-motion and gadget threat, but it’s Gipson who has taken on that role in the Jets’ offense so far. With Hardman out the door, it appears the Jets are officially all-in on Gipson.
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