Just like many NY Jets fans were imagining when Aaron Rodgers arrived in Florham Park in the offseason, wide receiver Mecole Hardman caught a game-winning touchdown that sealed a Super Bowl victory. It would have been nice if Hardman made that catch on the Jets instead of the Kansas City Chiefs.
After the Rodgers injury, the Jets stuck Hardman on the bench and barely gave him any playing time. By the middle of the year, Hardman would be traded back to the Chiefs. While he was largely ineffective, the speedy deep threat came alive when the chips were down in Super Bowl LVIII.
Hardman caught three passes for 57 yards, one of which was a 52-yard heave that only Patrick Mahomes could pull off and another of which was a game-winning catch that gave Kansas City their third Super Bowl ring in five seasons. Hardman was elated to be back in his old digs and no longer in Jets green.
Hardman jokingly said "don't remind me" when asked about his cameo with the Jets earlier in the season. It seems that riding Mahomes' coattails for another ring was a better use of his time than watching Zach Wilson passes sail over his head.
Mecole Hardman mocks NY Jets tenure after SB win with Chiefs
It was clear to all that Hardman chose to join the Jets to play with Rodgers. Once he went down, and Nathaniel Hackett seemingly removed every semblance of verticality in the team's offense in his ill-fated attempt to babysit Wilson, the speed Hardman brings was essentially neutered.
Hardman ended his Jets tenure with just a handful of snaps and managed just one catch for six yards. Considering that Hardman was signed with the promise of a more expansive role than what he was given in Kansas City, the disappointment was palpable for both Hardman himself and the fanbase in general.
The worst part about Hardman's revival in Kansas City is the fact he looked like he was going to be a non-factor leading up to the game. When the chips were down, Hardman made plays, leaving the Jets wondering how it all went so wrong.
Only teams like the Jets can sign a player from a title-winning team, watch him do next to nothing while in New York green, and then watch him win another Super Bowl with his old team. Even when the Jets haven't played a game in over a month, they are still the subject of everyone's jokes.