WR Mecole Hardman - Kansas City Chiefs
|5-11, 183||Born: 3-12-1998||College: Georgia||Drafted: Round 2, pick 2019|
Week 11: at Los Angeles Chargers
FBG says: Neutral matchup. The return of Patrick Mahomes went just as the Chiefs would have wanted last week, minus the win as he fell to the Titans in a nailbiter. Mahomes showed virtually no signs of injury last week as he passed for a season-high 446 yards and three touchdowns--the fifth time in seven full games he has passed for three or more touchdowns. Mahomes has now also crossed the 300-yard mark in all but one of his full games with only one interception to pair with 18 touchdowns. Travis Kelce had his fifth seven-catch game of the season last week while also finding the end zone for the third time. Kelce has now scored in two of his last three games as he is finally converting on some of the red zone looks, having received 14 opportunities from the red zone but only converting three of them for scores this season. Tyreek Hill saw an astonishing 19 targets last week as he racked up a huge game with 157 yards and a touchdown. Hill has now hauled in 17 passes for 297 yards and two touchdowns in his past two games. He has also scored in four of five games since returning from injury--clearly a top option at his position both for the Chiefs and entire NFL. The Chargers defense has made it tough on opposing passing offenses this season, holding them to the fifth-fewest passing yards per game (207.8) with quarterbacks scoring also scoring the fifth-fewest fantasy points per game against them. The Chargers have faced some very subpar quarterbacks this season though, with only Aaron Rodgers and Deshaun Watson being anywhere near the level of Patrick Mahomes (and Watson passed for 351 and 3 touchdowns). While Tyreek Hill has been rolling in recent weeks, he has certainly struggled when facing top-notch cornerbacks this season as Jalen Ramsey bottled him up on limited snaps in Week 1 while Chris Harris Jr. held Hill to just three receptions in Week 7. Casey Hayward will be another elite cornerback squaring off against Hill this week. Hayward has been the anchor of this Chargers passing defense that has limited wide receivers to the seventh-fewest fantasy points per game (PPR scoring). While Hill certainly would qualify as a matchup-proof talent, Hayward should make it much more difficult for him to explode this week as he did in the past two games. However, Hayward likely will not shadow Hill--and all it takes is one big play for Hill to make his mark on a game, which he certainly could do against the likes of Michael Davis--a much weaker cornerback opposite Hayward.
Recent Stats and Projections
Weekly Performance vs WR 1, WR 12, WR 24, WR 36
Mecole Hardman's percentile rank in each category, among WR with more than 50 fantasy points.
Recent Game Summaries
2019 Week 10 vs TEN (1 / 1 / 63 / 1 rec)
Mecole Hardman caught one pass for 63 yards and a touchdown in the Chiefs loss to the Titans on Sunday. Once again, Hardman was not on the field for too many snaps, yet, once again, he made his presence felt by scoring a 63 yard touchdown on his only offensive touch of the day. Excluding week nine, where he did not record a catch, Hardman now has five catches for 146 yards and three touchdowns in weeks seven, eight and ten. Hardman's touchdown in this game was exactly as you would have expected it, as he got a chance to show off his speed and predictably, the defense had no chance of catching him once he got going. The entire play was a highlight reel with Mahomes kicking off the play with a jump-pass in a crowded pocket that was collapsing al around him. The jump-pass gave him a little extra time and a lot more leverage, which enabled him to get the pass off clean and out in front of Hardman. By doing this, Hardman was able to catch the ball in stride and turn it upfield. Hardman then outran the entire Titans secondary on his way to a 63 yard touchdown.
2019 Week 9 vs MIN (0 / 0 / 0 / 0 rec, 1 / 7 / 0 rush)
Mecole Hardman did not have a catch and rushed only one time for seven yards in the Chiefs win over the Vikings on Sunday. Hardman's most impact play was for the Vikings unfortunately, as he fumbled away the ball during a punt return. This stat line shouldn't be that surprising though, as Hardman was not seeing a large volume of touches. With Hill back in the lineup, and Moore at quarterback, Hardman was somewhat disposable as a utility player. With Mahomes back at quarterback this week, Hardman should get more opportunities simply because the Chiefs offense will get more opportunities, but he will continue to be a hard player to trust from week to week for the rest of the season.
2019 Week 8 vs GB (2 / 2 / 55 / 1 rec)
Mecole Hardman caught two passes for 55 yards and a touchdown on only two targets in the Chiefs loss to the Packers on Sunday night. Hardman was once again electric, churning out to the two longest receptions of the Chiefs offense on his only two touches of the game. Hardman's touchdown catch came with the Chiefs facing a first and ten from the Packers 30 yard line. Moore took the snap out of the shotgun and dropped the ball in front of him to Hardman who was coming across the formation from the right to the left side. The Chiefs offensive line and fellow receivers set up blocks very well for Hardman to get him downfield enough for him to use his speed. Hardman got going downhill and then made one cut back to the middle of the field that was incredibly smooth, and it happened so fast that a Packers defender missed a wide open diving tackle that he had a great angle on but just could not time it right with Hardman running so fast. Hardman was not touched on the play until right after he crossed the goal line, giving the rookie receiver his fourth touchdown of the season and his second consecutive game with a touchdown. Hardman gives the Chiefs yet another incredible athlete with speed on the outside and inside slot, but what was once thought of as a luxury pick (or a potential replacement for Tyreek Hill had he encountered the wrath of Roger Goodell) has turned into a pivotal player in the Chiefs offense, regardless of his lack of volume. He's the type of player who can break any play wide open for a long touchdown, and he has earned his way onto the field by outplaying Demarcus Robinson pretty badly over the last six games.
2019 Week 7 vs DEN (3 / 2 / 28 / 1 rec)
Mecole Hardman caught two passes for 28 yards and a touchdown on three targets in the Chiefs win over the Broncos. Once again it was all feast or famine from Hardman, as he's not seeing enough targets to be counted on every week, but he has managed to make big plays, scoring a touchdown or eclipsing 70+ yards in four of his last six games. Hardman's touchdown catch came with the Chiefs facing a third and two om the Broncos 21 yard line. Mahomes took the snap out of the shotgun and looked to Hardman running a crossing route towards the left sideline. The pass was out in front of Hardman and the receiver initially bobbled the ball, but was able to corral it and turn the corner before his defender could recover. Hardman then was able to slip one arm tackle from a Broncos defender before scoring on the 21 yard reception.
2019 Week 6 vs HOU (4 / 4 / 45 / 0 rec)
Mecole Hardman caught four passes on four targets for 45 yards in the Chiefs loss to the Texans on Sunday. With Hill back in the lineup, Hardman became more of a gadget receiver, as the Chiefs gave him several designed screen plays, but that was about it for the rookie receiver. Hardman has the speed to give the Chiefs another weapon when Hill is being double covered, but it will be hard for him to break through into the starting lineup with Hill, Watkins and Robinson in front of him on the depth chart. That is before you even consider Travis Kelce, so Hardman is looking at being the fifth option at best. His home run ability gives you some upside to chase if you need help at receiver on bye weeks though.
2019 Week 5 vs IND (6 / 4 / 79 / 0 rec, 1 / -6 / 0 rush)
Mecole Hardman caught four passes on six targets for 79 yards in the Chiefs loss to the Colts on Sunday. Hardman was one of the few Chiefs offensive players able to generate big plays against the Colts. He had catches of 16, 22, 31 and 19 yards. His 31 yard catch was the long gain of the night for the Chiefs, coming on a long pass down the right sideline where his defender interfered with him on two different occasions. Mahomes threw the ball on the run (another incredible throw) right into Hardman's hands in stride, but Hardman also deserves credit for the concentration shown to catch the ball despite being interfered with. Despite the Chiefs offense being down this week, this was a good showing on Hardman's part. The Chiefs are using him in a variety of ways similar to how they used Tyreek Hill early in his career, and it will be interesting to see how the offense runs when Hill returns to the lineup sometime in the next two weeks.
2019 Week 4 vs DET (5 / 2 / 9 / 0 rec)
Mecole Hardman caught two passes for nine yards on five targets against the Lions on Sunday. His low yardage was not a result of Hardman only being targeted in the short passing game as three of his five targets came at least 20 yards down the field. Hardman was unable to reel in any of those passes, so he had to settle for trying to create yards after the catch, which he was unsuccessful in doing. Hardman is a feast or famine type target, and as we saw this past week, when he's not blowing by defenders with his speed, he's not going to come down with a lot of catches.
2019 Week 3 vs BAL (5 / 2 / 97 / 1 rec, 1 / 7 / 0 rush)
Mecole Hardman caught two passes for 97 yards and a touchdown on five targets against the Ravens. Hardman has seen increased snaps with Tyreek Hill out with an injury, and the rookie continues to show why the Chiefs drafted him so early. After scoring a touchdown in his starting debut last week, Hardman had the long play of the game, scoring on an 83 yard touchdown catch for the Chiefs second touchdown of the day. With the Chiefs facing a first and ten from their own 17 yard line, Hardman was lined up in the left inside slot position. Prior to the snap, Mahomes motioned Watkins from the outside left position to Hardman's right. This motion confused the Ravens defense, as when Mahomes took the snap, the nickel back went right to where Watkins was lined up before the snap. This allowed Hardman to get a free release off the line, and with his speed, that was bound to cause problems. Hardman ran free down the middle of the field before Mahomes found him perfectly in stride at midfield. From there it was a foot race and the Ravens had no chance, as Hardman ran untouched into the endzone for an 83 yard touchdown. Hardman's other catch was also of the highlight variety, as Mahomes threw a swing pass to him that was deflected by a Ravens defensive lineman. Instead of it going for a pick six, Hardman was able to pluck the ball out of midair, reverse field and pick up 14 yards.
2019 Week 2 vs OAK (6 / 4 / 61 / 1 rec)
Mecole Hardman caught four passes for 61 yards and a touchdown on six targets in the Chiefs win over the Raiders on Sunday. Hardman saw extended time with the Chiefs first team offense due to Tyreek Hill injury and he took full advantage of his playing time by scoring a 42 yard touchdown. On this play, the Chiefs were facing a third and 20 from the Raiders 42 yard line. Hardman was lined up in the inside left slot position and ran a deep post to the middle of the field. Hardman got a step off the line of scrimmage and continued to increase that separation, especially when he reached the apex of his route and curled towards the middle of the field. He blew by the Raiders safeties and Mahomes threw a perfect ball to Hardman in stride for a 42 yard touchdown. Hardman was drafted in part because of his elite speed, as well as his ability to run the type of routes that the Chiefs have designed for Hill. With that said, Hardman is much more than insurance policy on Hill as he has the type of speed and agility that the Chiefs can use when opponents try to limit Hill, Kelce, Watkins and Robinson. The Chiefs offense is an embarrassment of riches, and I fully expect Hardman to continue to get better as the year progresses.
Latest NewsChiefs | Long score for Mecole Hardman (Sun Nov 10, 09:27 PM) - Kansas City Chiefs WR Mecole Hardman caught his only target for a 63-yard touchdown in a 35-32 loss to the Tennessee Titans in Week 10. link to story
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|11||@ Los Angeles Chargers|
|12||--- BYE WEEK ---|
|13||vs Oakland Raiders|
|14||@ New England Patriots|
|15||vs Denver Broncos|
|16||@ Chicago Bears|
|17||vs Los Angeles Chargers|