’There was a tight end named Gesicki whose hands were known for being sticky when he came to the Fins, their fans dreamt of more wins but the memory of Egnew is tricky’
When former Miami Dolphins GM Jeff Ireland drafted tight end Michael Egnew in 2012, a lot of fans were understandably excited. Coming from the University of Missouri in the third round that year, Egnew was fast, svelte and productive. Notching nearly 1300 yards and eight touchdowns in his last two college seasons, he looked like a third round steal when Ireland took him with the 78th overall pick, just six spots after selecting UM defensive end Olivier Vernon.
Egnew would last only two seasons in Miami, however, and when 2011 draftee Charles Clay had a career year in 2013, with more than 750 receiving yards, his fate was all but sealed. The Dolphins cut him during training camp in 2014. After Miami waived him, Detroit, Jacksonville, Pittsburgh and New Orleans all had him in camp over the next two years, but his NFL career was finished. His two seasons with the Dolphins yielded just seven receptions for 69 yards. The aforementioned Clay would return for the 2014 season before signing an obscenely large contract with the Buffalo Bills the following year.
Since losing Clay in free agency three years ago, the Dolphins haven’t gotten much production from the tight end position, despite having signed Jordan Cameron and Julius Thomas in free agency. Perhaps no position has bedeviled the Dolphins in recent seasons more than tight end; they haven’t been able to stop opposing teams’ TE’s on defense and they’ve gotten next to nothing from their own on offense. This is why Miami’s front office spent a high second round pick (42nd overall) on Penn State’s Mike Gesicki this year. Gesicki is similar in physical stature to Egnew, and their college stats and pre draft workout numbers are comparable. Dolphin fans can only hope Gesicki has more success in Miami than Egnew did. One thing that should benefit him is that the Dolphins appear to have a much better team and receiving corps today than they did a few years ago. They still struggle at times in the red zone, however, and if Gesicki can post up smaller defensive backs and linebackers in the end zone the way he did in college, he’ll earn his salary for the Dolphins. He didn’t drop many passes with the Nittany Lions; let’s hope that trend continues.