Skip to main content

New York Jets add dynamic playmaker in NFL free agency

The New York Jets added wide receiver Allen Lazard earlier in NFL free agency to presumably catch passes from four-time NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers.

For general manager Joe Douglas and the Jets, the idea was to bring in someone that Rodgers was familiar with in an attempt to complete a trade with the Green Bay Packers.

While Mecole Hardman has no built-in relationship with Rodgers, New York’s signing of the former Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver could have a major impact.

According to NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport, New York has signed Hardman to a one-year contract that could pay him up to $6.5 million for the 2023 season.

A second-round pick of the Chiefs back in 2019 out of Georgia next really panned out for Kansas City. Though, he did have his moments catching passes from reigning NFL MVP Patrick Mahomes.

Back in 2021, the 25-year-old Hardman caught 59 passes for 693 yards while hauling in north of 71% of his targets.

Related: New York Jets reportedly targeting Pro Bowl lineman in NFL free agency

What the Mecole Hardman signing means for the New York Jets

new york jets sign mecole hardman
Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

As of right now, Hardman joins reigning NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year Garrett Wilson, veteran Corey Davis and the aforementioned Lazard as the Jets’ top-four wide receivers.

This seems to suggest that 2021 second-round pick Elijah Moore could be dealt by the New York Jets at some point soon. The former Mississippi star fell out of favor under head coach Robert Saleh last season.

It came to the point that Moore actually requested to be dealt ahead of the in-season NFL trade deadline. Several teams have shown interest in Moore over the past calendar year, including the San Francisco 49ers.

Hardman has to be seen as an improvement over last season’s iteration of Moore.

Equally as important, it certainly does look like that Jets are adding core skill-position talent with an eye on Rodgers actually landing in Jersey. Whether that comes to fruition remains to be seen. It’s all about the Packers’ asking price and New York’s willingness to meet it.

Written by experts, for sports fans who want a FREE daily newsletter worth reading. Get Sportsnaut First today!