Mecole Hardman Dishes on Jets Drama That Led to Trade

Super Bowl hero Mecole Hardman did not hold back when speaking about his experience with the Jets this season.

Jan 13, 2024; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Mecole Hardman (12)
Jan 13, 2024; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Mecole Hardman (12) / Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports
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Former Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Mecole Hardman made one of the most memorable plays in Super Bowl history earlier this month, scoring the game-winning touchdown against the San Francisco 49ers as the Chiefs won their second-straight Super Bowl.

However, Hardman’s historic moment almost didn’t happen as he started the 2023 season with the New York Jets. The veteran wide receiver signed a one-year deal last offseason with New York after the Chiefs won Super Bowl 57.

Hardman didn’t do much with the Jets (one reception for six yards in six games) despite their issues at wide receiver, which ultimately led to New York trading him back to Kansas City. The 25-year-old wideout talked about the drama with the Jets on the latest episode of The Pivot Podcast with Ryan Clark, Fred Taylor, and Channing Crowder.

Hardman told the guys on the podcast that he refused to return punts against the Chiefs earlier this season because he left as if Jets special team coordinator Brant Boyer misled him about the punt-return job in training camp, per ESPN.com’s Rich Cimini. 

The wide receiver spoke about how he didn’t have enough time to prepare and was dealing with his own injury. Hardman said that Jets head coach Robert Saleh was trying to convince him to return punts, but he said, “I’m not catching for that man (Boyer).”

It was an interesting conversation as Hardman spoke at length about the Jets’ culture and why it didn’t work out in the Big Apple. “It’s the lies and the way they handled me. I didn’t like it at all,” Hardman said.

If you are a Jets fan, this isn’t what you wanted to hear, as this squad failed to live up to expectations and now will be in a must-win spot in 2024.

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