Chiefs receiver Hardman placed on injured reserve after suffering abdominal injury

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Arguably the best stretch of Mecole Hardman's career has been interrupted, with the Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver set to miss the next month after being placed on injured reserve on Thursday.

Hardman, 24, scored a touchdown in three consecutive games for the first time in his career, starting in Week 6 against the Buffalo Bills, before also finding the endzone against the San Francisco 49ers and Tennessee Titans.

He was listed on the injury report with an abdominal injury following the win against the Titans in Week 9, before missing the Chiefs' Week 10 win against the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Unfortunately, his prospect of a quick return evaporated during the week off, with the team deciding he is far enough away from full health to warrant the use of the injured reserve.

He will be ineligible to play for at least the next four weeks, and it comes at a time when the Chiefs' top receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster is under the league's concussion protocol.

Smith-Schuster is also unlikely to play in Week 11 against the Los Angeles Chargers, which means there will be an increased responsibility for star tight end Travis Kelce, as well as an opportunity for recently acquired Kadarius Toney.

Toney, a first-round draft pick in 2021, arrived in Kansas City less than a month ago from the New York Giants in exchange for a third-round pick and a sixth-round pick.

In his second game for the Chiefs, Toney caught four passes for 57 yards and his first touchdown from quarterback Patrick Mahomes, also receiving two carries for 33 yards.