Tyreek Already Gone? Chiefs Select Tyreek Hill’s Clone in Blazing WR Mecole Hardman

The writing looks to be on the wall for Tyreek Hill.

We don’t know the ultimate status of Chiefs All-Pro WR Tyreek Hill, who is being accused of assaulting his young son and most recently had an audio tape of an argument with his fiancee leaked, but Kansas City trading up to grab Georgia wideout Mecole Hardman at No. 56 overall is very telling. Hardman is essentially an exact replica of Hill coming out of college — blazing speed that could make him a threat as a returner, but still needing some work as a receiver. The former high school defensive back may be a work-in-progress, but could’ve landed in the perfect destination with a creative offensive playbook and an MVP quarterback.

Hardman caught 35 passes for 547 yards and 7 TDs in his final collegiate season, in addition to averaging over 20 yards per punt return and over 25 yards per kickoff return. He also recorded the 5th-fastest 40 time at the combine (4.33), and the 3rd-fastest among WRs. Andy Reid spoke briefly about the pick and seemed excited about the possibilities a guy like Hardman could give his offense:

“We obviously like his speed, but he’s more than that. He can play inside, he can play outside — he did both at Georgia — and then he’s a phenomenal returner, arguably the best return man in the draft.”

Reid went on to say that Hardman was a guy they’ve liked “from the get-go” and that it had nothing to do with the Hill situation — you can decide for yourself if you want to believe that. But if Hill is cut or suspended, the Chiefs would need to replace a guy who played over 86% of their offensive snaps a season ago and put up over 1,600 yards of total offense. Hardman isn’t a guarantee for that role by any means, but with little competition on the depth chart, he could get a shot at it, which would make him a valuable, low-risk fantasy investment.


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