The union between Mecole Hardman and the New York Jets ended abruptly this week when the former Pro Bowler was shipped back to the Kansas City Chiefs. Hardman left KC via free agency in the offseason, signing a one-year deal with the Jets, but played in just five games for Gang Green.
Who wins the Super Bowl next year?
As Brad Henson Productions — the video editor of Chiefs Focus, according to his bio — said on X/Twitter: “I don’t get why some people are mad that we brought Mecole Hardman back? Before he was injured last year, he was killing it. He adds the speed we need and the veteran presence of knowing the playbook and is comfortable with Mahomes. Time to shush the critics!”
Based on social media reaction, folks in Kansas City, both in and outside the organization, are welcoming Hardman back to town with open arms. Getting banished and sent packing by the Jets has to be a hard pill to swallow. The only reason this blow is cushioned is because Hardman goes back to where there’s familiarity.
Hardman’s run in the swamps of Jersey barely got off the runway as he received just three targets in five games, catching one pass for six yards. A big part of that comes down to Aaron Rodgers not being available and Zach Wilson being the guy under center. There’s a valley of experience and knowledge between those two quarterbacks.
With Rodgers on the field, you’d think Hardman would’ve had many more opportunities, but one can only assume. Once A-Rod went down, Hardman became an automatic non-factor in Nathaniel Hackett’s offense. For all we know, that might have happened anyway, but with Rodgers on the field, he stood a much better chance.
Although it sucks to have a franchise give up on you, this trade should breathe new life into Hardman’s career. The 25-year-old wide receiver/return specialist is back with the team he’s won two Super Bowls with and represented in the Pro Bowl. He adds speed to the Chiefs’ offense and brings back a familiar face for Patrick Mahomes. So, while it’s a huge disappointment that things didn’t work out in New York, going back to the organization that drafted Hardman in 2019 is best for business.