Here’s some good news for one former New Orleans Saints: the New York Jets announced Wednesday that cornerback Justin Hardee Sr. was named a team captain for the 2021 season. That news comes less than six months after Hardee signed with the Jets, leaving New Orleans on a three-year, $5.25 million contract.
Hardee, 27, first joined the Saints as an undrafted wide receiver from Illinois who had already washed out of Houston Texans training camp. He converted to defensive back in New Orleans and began working on the special teams units, which earned him a roster spot and bought time for his continued development. By the time he left the Saints in free agency, he was considered one of the NFL’s best special teams assets.
And his reputation for a strong work ethic clearly won over his new teammates and coaches. Hardee will see the Saints again when they fly up to New York on Dec. 12, as will defensive tackle Sheldon Rankins, who also signed with the Jets this offseason. Here’s to their success — except for that game against the Saints, anyway.
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