The Miami Dolphins have spent the past decade in the depths of the AFC East. The Dolphins and the other teams in the AFC East have been searching for the answer to the juggernaut that was the New England Patriots. Over the years, one advantage the Patriots constantly had was an impact Tightend. Ben Watson and Rob Gronkowski had secured this position for the Patriots. This was one thing the Dolphins could never solidify. The hope is that Mike Gesicki can do this for Miami, as a new era is upon us in the AFC East.
Mike Gesicki played his college football at Penn State, where he started all four years. This is very impressive for any college player. During this time, he recorded 129 receptions, 1,481 yards, along with 15 touchdowns. In his senior year, he ranked 3rd in the Big Ten with 9 touchdowns. He would also be one of the three finalists for the Mackey Award for the nations top Tightend. His ability to produce on a team that was not known for their passing was impressive. This was something that NFL scouts loved about him, along with his 6’6” frame.
Gesicki simply stole the show at the 2018 NFL Combine, where he impressed in every event that he participated in. He ran a 4.54 40 yard dash, which was one of the fastest all time for Tightends. He followed this up with amazing numbers in the bench press (22 reps), broad jump (10’9”), vertical jump (41.5), and posted a 6.79 three-cone drill. These were some of the best performances in history! This solidified him as the best Tightend prospect in the Draft.
April 26th 2018 had arrived, the NFL Draft was here, and everyone was eager to find out where Gesicki would land. To most everyone’s surprise, we had to wait to find out where Gesicki would continue his career. Hayden Hurst would be the only Tightend taken in the first round. Day two came, Gesicki quickly came of the board! The Miami Dolphins selected him with the 42nd overall pick. The fit seemed perfect, as he would have an opportunity to solidify their tightend position.
The fantasy football community liked the fit as well. One of the greatest Tightend prospects landing on a team that had a clear path to a starting role. However, Gesicki would follow a trend as old as time, he underperformed in his rookie season as a fantasy asset. He would only record 40.2 PPR points in 14 games. Most people had thought he would have burst onto the scene and become one of the better tightends in the league. It was apparent he would need more time to get to that point in his career. The patient owners of Gesicki would reward in 2019. The athletic Tightend burst onto the scene, having an amazing back half of the season. He posted 5 double digit PPR point performances and would finish the season as the TE12. His 136 PPR points were a career high, as he was ascending up the Tightend ranks. It seemed the Dolphins had found their answer at Tightend!
This year, Gesicki has continued his upward trend. Showing off his amazing athletic ability and using it to create mismatches for NFL defenses. For fantasy mangers, he was producing great performances, including, a career performance against Buffalo in Week 3 where he record 30 PPR points. However, he was not a very constant player. He had shown a tendency to disappear at times. This made him hard to start on a weekly basis. Since Tua has taken over in Miami, this trend has seemed to disappear for now. Since Week 12, Gesicki has had three double digit performances. He has also seen a weekly increase in his target share. While he currently sits as the TE8 on the season, he unfortunately sustained a blow to his shoulder in week 14. He had to miss last week due to the injury, and the hope is that he returns this week and can continue his career year.
It is not clear whether or not Gesicki will add to his impressive performance at this time. The arrival of Tua and a new coaching staff in Miami has done wonders for Gesicki. The sky is the limit for this extremely athletic Tightend. The only question is, can he get there? Based off of current statistics and film, he has solidified the Dolphins Tightend postion, along with many fantasy football player’s Tightend position as well. Gesicki should only get better, as his chemistry with Tua grows and the Dolphins add talent to their roster. If you need a player to target in the offseason, he should be at the top of your list!