Weighing pros and cons of a Mecole Hardman trade for KC Chiefs

There are some real points to be made on both sides of such a potential trade for the Chiefs.
New York Jets v Dallas Cowboys
New York Jets v Dallas Cowboys / Cooper Neill/GettyImages
2 of 3

The Pros of Trading for Mecole Hardman

First things first, you have to imagine it wouldn't cost any team much at all to procure the services of Hardman for the rest of 2023 from the Jets. If the Jets are likely ready to dump him for nothing, then a trade demanding that they eat the majority of the money involved should be an easy sell. It should also cost nothing higher than a low-level draft asset. In short, the overall cost here should make most fans shrug and ask, "Well, why not?"

Remember this: in the wake of Tyreek Hill's trade before the 2022 season, Hardman looked like he was ready for a lot more production for the Chiefs when not hampered by injuries. (He had a hamstring issue to start the year and an abdomen injury sidelined him for the second half of the year.) From Weeks 5-8, Hardman had 17 catches for 276 receiving yards and 3 touchdowns. Extrapolated for a full season, that'd bring Mecole to 12 touchdowns and over 1,000 yards.

It's irresponsible to project Hardman like that, but Hardman sans Tyreek is a different Hardman and it's worth noting that the Chiefs never got to see it over a full season. Hardman was originally drafted to be a replacement for Hill back in 2019 when the Cheetah was in potential hot water after his ex-girlfriend made some disturbing allegations about him—on the opening day of the NFL Draft!

So what if Hardman can be more? He is also very familiar with the Chiefs offense already, and he would not require the same sort of onboarding that other acquisitions might need in order to make an impact. If he can take over return duties from the likes of Montrell Washington and add a familiar face to a WR room that has had issues building trust with Patrick Mahomes, it seems like a move worth making.

Or does it? Let's look at the cons of a Hardman deal.