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Hardman Hints at Frustration for Lack of Playing Time

The hardly-used receiver sends subtle messages via social media

A composed Mecole Hardman addressed reporters in the New York Jets' locker-room last week. 

The fifth-year slot receiver signed with the Jets as a free agent in the offseason but seems to be an afterthought when it comes to the team's offensive personnel deployment. Through three weeks, Hardman logged only 16 offensive snaps (fewer than 10 percent of the team total).

"You gotta be professional. Be a pro about it. Keep working, keep doing the right things. When your time comes, take advantage," said prior to the Week 4 matchup against his former team, the Kansas City Chiefs

Unfortunately for Hardman, his time didn't come against his old mates on Sunday Night Football. The speedy pass-catcher was on the field for only six of the Jets' 59 offensive plays and he was not targeted as a receiver in the 23-20 setback to the Chiefs.

After the game, the two-time Super Bowl champion hinted at his feelings on the matter through his personal social media activity on the site formerly known as Twitter. Hardman didn't share his own words on X. Instead, he let another user's post do the talking. 

Hardman reposted a simple message from X user @JJetsX, who was imploring the Jets to reward the receiver with an increase in playing time. 

"USE HIM !!! @nyjets @MecoleHardman4," said the Hardman supporter in a post that also featured a photo of the rarely-deployed pass-catcher.

Screenshot of Mecole Hardman's X Profile

Without a defined role on the Jets' offense, Hardman is likely frustrated on some level. In Week 4, he was out-snapped by undrafted rookie Xavier Gipson.

It's the second week in a row that Hardman has raised questions through his social media activity. 

Following the Week 3 loss to New England, the former second-round draft pick attempted to clarify any misconceptions about his ability to stay healthy.

"I wish people would stop saying I be hurt a lot, that just shows who actually pay attention! Played every game for 3 years straight and had a freak injury half way through year 4. A injury where none of y’all don’t even have the slightest idea of what I dealt with when the injury occurred," said Hardman, who was limited to eight regular season games in 2022 due to the "freak injury."


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