Atlanta Falcons top ten options in free agency to replace Calvin Ridley
4. Justin Hardy is a familiar face that makes sense despite his lack of production
Hardy spent all five of his seasons with the Falcons finishing with 946-career receiving yards and catching 9-touchdown passes. Over the span of five years, this equates to a solid role player, not the starting receiver that Atlanta needs.
However, Atlanta is currently utilizing role players as starters and Hardy is an upgrade over their current options. Putting Sharpe and Hardy into the starting lineup in place of Gage and Sharpe is a marginal improvement.
Hardy is more consistent and offers Matt Ryan a player that has more experience in the Atlanta offense. Hardy comes in at fourth on the list based on the fact he would be cheap and familiar with the Falcons offense. His talent is only marginally better than Atlanta’s current depth options.
Hardy’s best season came in Atlanta’s infamous Super Bowl year. It was a season that saw Matt Ryan spreading targets around and Hardy benefitted from putting together his best season to date. It seems unlikely many other teams will have interest in Hardy even as a depth piece giving Atlanta a chance to sign Hardy at the minimum with no risks. If he cannot produce at the level he did in seasons past Atlanta can cut him and move on.