Jets punter fires back after Chiefs’ Mecole Hardman blasts former team: ‘Disgruntled former employees’


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New York Jets punter Thomas Morstead is coming to the team’s defense after Kansas City Chiefs wideout Mecole Hardman blasted the organization during a recent podcast appearance, saying he had “checked out” early on during his brief tenure in New York. 

Hardman, who began the 2023 season with the Jets before getting traded back to the Chiefs after just six games, did not hold back on detailing his experience in New York during “The Pivot” podcast on Tuesday. 

Wide receiver Mecole Hardman Jr. of the Kansas City Chiefs lifts the Lombardi Trophy after Super Bowl LVIII on Feb. 11, 2024, in Las Vegas. (Luke Hales/Getty Images)

“It’s the lies and the way they handled me. I didn’t like it at all,” Hardman said, per the New York Post. 

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“You can’t do that to a player. A player that you paid at that. … I play one play, oh hell no. Something got to shake bro, like, what we talking about, bro.”

Hardman also called out the Jets’ offense, saying the team had no plan after quarterback Aaron Rodgers went down with a season-ending injury.

“It was over with. I had already talked to [Chiefs General Manager Brett] Veach and [quarterback Patrick Mahomes] like, ‘Come get me,'” he continued, adding that he was “checked out” early on.

Mecole Hardman with Jets

Mecole Hardman had plenty to say about his time with the New York Jets. (Cooper Neill/Getty Images/File)

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The remarks did not sit well with some of Hardman’s old teammates, including Morstead, who took to social media on Wednesday to set the record straight. 

“Be careful getting information from disgruntled former employees,” he said in a post on X, without naming Hardman. 

“Getting beat out by a rookie free agent after being guaranteed millions of dollars is tough to deal with,” he said, referencing Xavier Gipson. “Entitlement is a killer of opportunity. You have to earn it every year.”

Thomas Morstead looks on

New York Jets punter Thomas Morstead went on social media to set the record straight with regard to Hardman’s comments. (Nick Cammett/Diamond Images via Getty Images)

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In a since-deleted post, Hardman responded to Morstead, indicating that he didn’t “know the whole story.” 

Hardman also responded to tampering allegations, saying he “never had talks with KC before the trade.”

Hardman won his third Super Bowl ring with the Chiefs this past season, scoring the game-winning touchdown in overtime to defeat the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl LVIII.



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