The Atlanta Falcons added another weapon on offense by selecting East Carolina wide receiver Justin Hardy with their fourth-round pick, the 107th overall selection.
Hardy was highly productive during his career at ECU, finishing atop that school’s all-time list in receiving yards (4,541) and touchdowns (35). His 387 career receptions not only was a school record, but was an NCAA FBS record, eclipsing Ryan Broyle’s 349 career receptions.
In 2013, he finished third in the nation with 114 catches, adding 1,284 yards and eight touchdowns. As a senior, his 121 receptions ranked second nationally and his 1,494 yards were fourth. He also had 10 receiving touchdowns this past year and adding another on his lone rush attempt for seven yards. That production allowed him to be named a third-team All-American this past year.
He led his team in receiving his first two years at ECU as well, catching 64 passes for 658 yards and six touchdowns as a redshirt freshman, before adding 88 catches for 1,105 yards and 11 scores as a sophomore. He finished his career at ECU topping the school’s Hardy was also a team captain that also served as a punt returner his last three years at ECU. For his career, he averaged 7.9 yards on 63 career punt returns.
Hardy measured in at 5’10” and 192 pounds at the Combine and topped the wide receivers with a 6.63-second three-cone drill. He also ran the 40-yard dash in 4.56 seconds, did 11 bench reps of 225 pounds and leapt 36.5 inches on the vertical jump. He also participated in the Senior Bowl.
He’ll add much needed depth and youth to the Falcons wide receiver corps and be developed to potentially start for the team down the road as Roddy White (33) and Devin Hester (32) get up in age.