The Miami Dolphins have had 75 tight ends on their roster since 1966. That does not include the players they added this off-season.
It’s far too early to know if Julius Thomas will thrive in Adam Gase’s Miami offense like he did in Gase’s Denver offense but there are some pretty big shoes for him to fill regardless.
This year the Dolphins also added Anthony Fasano to the roster, but Fasano counts in that 75 as he has already been with the Dolphins before. Is he a top 10 Miami Dolphins tight-end? You will have to read on to find out.
For five years Edmunds caught passes from Dan Marino. Joining the team in 1988, Edmunds left the team following the 1992 season when he joined the Seahawks for his final two seasons.
Edmunds wasn’t flashy but he was serviceable and a decent blocker. He posted only 10 touchdowns and 1,612 yards in his time with Miami.
Jackson was a big free agent signing in the early days of free agency. He was supposed be the end all at tight-end for Don Shula and Dan Marino. After three Pro-Bowls with the Eagles, Jackson arrived with an impressive resume.
In his four seasons with the Eagles, Jackson scored 49 touchdowns and posted 5,283 yards receiving. Miami did not get that kind of production out of Jackson. His three years netted 20 touchdowns and 2,756 yards. Hardly a bust but Miami did expect more.
Jackson lasted three seasons in Miami and then finished his final two seasons in Green Bay. He did make the Pro-Bowl in his first season with Miami.
Johnson played for only the Miami Dolphins in his five year career. Of the 66 games he appeared in he started 34 as he split time with other TE’s on the roster.
Over those five seasons he caught 16 touchdowns and posted 1,012 yards. If nothing else Johnson was consistent over his five seasons however his production dropped considerably in his final season. Johnson only played in seven games in 1987. He posted 35 yards receiving and two touchdowns.
Drayton played nine years in the NFL starting with the Rams in 1993 and finishing with the Chiefs in 2000. Between ’96 and 1999, Drayton was a Miami Dolphin.
In his four seasons with Miami he posted eight touchdowns and 1,511 yards. He averaged 11.9 yards per reception. Drayton still works with Dolphins appearing from time to time on their media broadcasts and he served as a co-host of the teams FinSiders broadcast as well.
McMichael joined the Dolphins in 2002 as a rookie. He spent five seasons with the Dolphins before jumping to the Rams in 2007 as a free agent.
In his five seasons he scored 18 touchdowns. He caught 283 of the 469 passes thrown his way for just under 3,100 yards and posted a 10.9 yards per catch average. McMichael would not have the same success outside of Miami. He posted only 2 touchdowns and 543 yards in three seasons with San Diego and 900 yards and 4 touchdowns in his three years with the Rams.
When Charles Clay finished his rookie contract with the Dolphins he signed an agreement with the Bills that the Dolphins opted to not match. His four seasons had come to an end.
During those years Clay caught 269 passes for 2,889 yards and 21 touchdowns. Versatility was Clays forte’. He played the H-Back role instead of the traditional TE role. He lined up in the back-field, off the tackle, and in the slot during his time in Miami.
Clay signed a big free agent contract with the Bills and to date, he has caught seven touchdowns. He caught 14 with Miami. Overall his stats through two seasons with the Bills are almost half of what he completed in four with the Dolphins.
The Top 4
Mandich was far more than just a simple TE who posted only 23 touchdowns in eight year career. The 70’s were far different from the way they were in the mid-80’s to today. Blocking was essential and Mandich excelled.
Mandich however became the voice of the Dolphins long after he left the NFL in 1978 his lone year outside of the Dolphins. His best statistical year came in 1974 when he posted 33 receptions for 374 yards and six scores.
Rose spent six seasons with the Dolphins and claims the honor of catching Dan Marino’s first touchdown pass of his career. Rose scored 13 total touchdowns in his career. Fitting given Marino’s jersey number.
He posted 112 receptions for 1,493 yards and continues his work with the Dolphins today in the broadcasting arena.
When you think of Miami Dolphins tight-end, Bruce Hardy may not be on the top of your lips. This despite playing his entire 12 year career with Miami. A solid blocking and receiving tight-end, Hardy transitioned well from the blocking late 70’s to the pass happy Marino years.
He played with Bob Griese, David Woodley, Don Strock, and seven seasons with Marino and the myriad of back-ups.
Viewing Hardy statistically is nothing to rave about. He caught only 25 touchdowns and posted only 2,455 yards. This despite starting 95 of 151 games. He spent his final two seasons mostly injured playing in only three games in the final two years.
Seiple comes up one year short of Hardy in the longevity category and his stats actually pale in comparison. For 11 years Seiple played for the Dolphins and no one else. But Seiple wasn’t just a tight-end, he was the teams punter for those 11 seasons.
Seiple rushed 16 times for 159 yards on what can assumed to be fake punts. He caught 73 receptions in his career and scored 7 touchdowns in the heyday of Miami’s potent three-headed rushing attack that took the team to three consecutive Super Bowls.