Last year when Miami Dolphins tight end Mike Gesicki was scheduled to become a free agent, there was a debate do the Dolphins franchise tag him or let him. I said the Dolphins should let him go because I didn’t feel he would fit into new head Mike McDaniel’s offensive scheme, which tight ends had to block. Gesicki is a horrible blocker but a talented pass catcher and playmaker. The Dolphins new coaching staff thought they could develop his blocking skills to complement his pass-catching skills to become a complete tight end. The Dolphins decided to put the franchise tag on Gesicki for 10 million dollars. 

Well, McDaniel and his staff found out what we all knew, Gesicki can’t block worth beans. It clearly showed in certain games this year when Gesicki’s snap count went down in certain games. His fellow tight end and best friend Durham Smythe was getting more playing time because he’s a better blocker. That’s fine if McDaniel wants his tight ends to block, but he should have realized this wasn’t going to work with Gesicki as a blocker and tried to use him with his receiving skills. 

Defenses had to focus their attention on Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle this year with their game-breaking speed. At some point, you must get another receiver involved, and the Dolphins got contributions from Trent Sherfield. Still, Gesicki had proven himself a reliable playmaker with the Dolphins, even with all the offensive coaching staff changes under Brian Flores. In his three seasons under Flores, he had at least 50 catches a season and anywhere from 500-800 yards receiving with 13 touchdowns. This year Gesicki had his worst statistical season since his rookie season. Yes, he had five touchdowns, but he was underutilized in this offense. In the wild-card game against the Buffalo Bills, they were using him more on plays down the seam of the middle of the defense, and I wondered why the Dolphins didn’t use him more in that area or use his size more in the red zone as a target.  

McDaniel is known for being an offensive innovator, but he didn’t show it with Gesicki. He should have found a way to utilize his talents and get the most out of his abilities. Now the Dolphins wasted the season with him and will lose him in free agency to get nothing in return. The Dolphins would have been better off letting him go last year and using those $10-11 million dollars elsewhere on the roster instead of wasting Gesicki’s talents. He will probably go somewhere else to a place that will use him properly and not try to turn him into something he isn’t or keep him on the sideline. 

Gesicki, for his part, handled himself in his role very well and was commendable. Most players with his talent might have complained or caused a rift in the locker room, but he handled himself with class and a professional. He deserved a lot better than what McDaniel gave him. I wish him the best wherever he goes next.