I’m not sure how many receptions Mecole Hardman will end up with. Kansas City has plenty of other pass-catching options. But I think he’s about as likely as anyone to lead the league in long touchdowns.
Hardman has burner speed. Other than Tyreek Hill, John Ross and Henry Ruggs, he’s about as fast as anyone. And he’s in a position where he’s set up to come in fresh and run deep routes.
Kansas City has Hill and Sammy Watkins as its starting receivers. It also has Travis Kelce and a number of backs with good receiving ability. I think that sets up Hardman to rotate in as a situational player, striking for long touchdowns when they encounter the right defensive look. With his unique combination of accuracy, arm strength and mobility, Patrick Mahomes is the best quarterback at delivering those passes.
Watkins has been plagued by injuries. At some point he’ll probably get hurt, setting up Hardman to do a lot more. Initially, Hardman’s role should be as a hit-or-miss deep threat who’ll score some long touchdowns.
Hardman had a solid rookie season. He caught only 26 passes, but they averaged 20.7 yards. His 6 TD receptions averaged almost 48 yards, and he also scored a 104-yard touchdown on a kickoff return.
In the last 10 years, only 16 receivers have averaged at least 40 yards on touchdowns while catching at least 6 TDs.
|AVERAGING 40 YARDS ON TD CATCHES|
|41.7||7||2012||Cecil Shorts III|