It seems that Dolphins second round draft pick Mike Gesicki has more connections than what was originally thought. First it was revealed that he trained with Minkah Fitzpatrick in Pensacola, Florida, and now it has been revealed that he ran routes with Dolphins fourth round pick Durham Smythe before.
"He was actually on my team at the Senior Bowl." Smythe said during a phone conference after being drafted. "There were definitely times in practice where we’d be in a wing set or both on the field at the same time, so it’s something that we’ve already done. I could definitely see it happening in the future.”
Dolphins head coach Adam Gase is well known for wanting to utilize tight ends in his offense, but he has yet to find someone he can work with during his tenure as Miami's coach. In 2016 he had Jordan Cameron and Dion Sims, both of whom were injured and were limited in their contributions
In 2017 he tried to recreate his Denver success by trading for Julius Thomas. Instead, Thomas only made 41 catches for 388 yards and three touchdowns. Underwhelming to say the least.
Now with Gesicki, Miami has a highly-rated rookie who can finally be the seam threat Gase has been looking for, and Smythe has a lot of respect for Gesicki after playing with him in the Senior Bowl.
“Awesome guy." he said. "Like I said, he was on my team so I got to know him a little bit through this whole process, starting at the Senior Bowl, at the Combine and everything. I’ve gotten to know him a little bit. He seems like a great dude, a guy that loves football and a guy that’s going to come in and work.”
Smythe on the other hand is a more blocking oriented tight end, and has been compared to the likes of fellow Notre Dame alumnus Anthony Fasano. But despite the fact that he takes pride in his blocking ability, he does not consider himself a blocking tight end, and he wants to work on becoming more well-rounded.
“I think, specifically, it’s my route running." Smyhte said. "I think that kind of stems from a lack of total volume of what I’ve done over the last couple of years, because like I said earlier, we ran the ball a lot at Notre Dame. Obviously in practice and such, I was running routes on a pretty consistent basis; but I think taking a step up in that is one area that I’ve really tried to improve over the last few months.”
There will be competition for a roster spot; veterans MarQueis Gray and Gavin Escobar will be pushing for the primary backup role, and former Patriots and Broncos TE A.J. Derby has been talked up a lot by Miami. But should Smythe win the role, he's definitely looking forward to working with Gesicki again.
This story was written by Luis Sung. Follow him on Twitter: @LuisDSung
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