The Chiefs now have some questions at WR at this point in the offseason after losing Mecole Hardman and JuJu Smith-Schuster. Here’s how to replace them.
The offseason has not gone to plan for the reigning Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs. Going into the offseason, the plan appeared to be to allow Mecole Hardman to walk as he hit free agency, but to bring back another free agent in JuJu Smith-Schuster to serve as secondary receiver with Kadarius Toney serving as the No. 1 wideout in the offense.
Instead, the Chiefs lost both Hardman and Schuster to the AFC East, inking deals with the Jets and Patriots, respectively.
Now, Kansas City isn’t in a terrible spot. Toney can still be the WR1, Travis Kelce is the top pass-catcher in the offense, and they have high hopes for the likes of Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Skyy Moore and even former UDFA Justyn Ross. But that doesn’t mean they don’t need more help if it’s out there.
So how can the Chiefs look to replace their losses in an offseason that hasn’t gone according to plan? We have three ideas based on some recent reporting that could fit the bill.
Chiefs rumors: 3 wide receivers who can replace Mecole Hardman, JuJu Smith-Schuster
Jalin Hyatt would give the Chiefs another big-time speed threat
Given that Kansas City isn’t flush with cap room, their best option to add to the wide receiver room might well be through the 2023 NFL Draft. There are a host of wide receivers that could fit the bill for this offense that could go at either pick No. 31 or pick No. 63. However, if we’re talking about the high end of that, then Tennessee speedster Jalin Hyatt makes a ton of sense.
The Athletic (subscription required) recently compiled a mock draft done by each team’s beat writers. Chiefs insider Nate Taylor had Hyatt going to Kansas City at the end of the first round and it’s not hard to see why.
When you look at the players on the roster right now, the one thing that’s lacking is a bonafide and consistent vertical threat. Yes, MVS has flashed that ability, but it’s not been a reliable option for Kansas City or when he was in Green Bay either. Hyatt, on the other hand, excels in that department.
Andy Reid has long utilized deep threats in his offense extremely well and that’s only made easier with Patrick Mahomes and his rocket-arm at quarterback. Adding the burning ability of Hyatt to beat defenses over the top would give the Chiefs offense an element it might currently lack and, frankly, might be a better fit than Hardman or Smith-Schuster was.