The New York Jets reportedly have added a draft pick while essentially swapping one speedy wideout for another.
The Jets traded receiver Elijah Moore and a third-round pick to the Browns for Cleveland’s second-round pick, according to a report Wednesday afternoon from NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport.
It came approximately one hour after New York reportedly agreed to terms with free agent receiver Mecole Hardman, as first reported by NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero. Rapoport reported Hardman’s deal is for one year and worth up to $6.5 million.
The 22-year-old Moore was selected by the Jets in the second round of the 2021 draft after running a 4.35 40-yard dash at the NFL combine. He compiled 80 receptions for 984 yards and six touchdowns in 27 combined games with the Jets.
Meanwhile, the 25-year-old Hardman was selected by the Kansas City Chiefs in the second round of the 2019 draft after running a 4.33 40-yard dash at the combine. Hardman posted 151 receptions for 2,088 yards and 16 touchdowns in 57 games for the Chiefs, though battled injuries and was limited to eight contests in 2022.
Arguably the biggest difference between the two players is the fact Moore has two years left on his rookie contract. Moore has base salaries of $1.4 million and $1.9 million over the next two years, clearly the short-term cheaper option of the two.
However, with the Jets seemingly nearing a trade for Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, it’s fair to think adding a second-round pick was worth taking on the bigger one-year salary of Hardman. New York now has back-to-back picks in April’s NFL draft at Nos. 42 and 43, but it seems unlikely they’ll keep both (or either?) in the impending trade with Green Bay.