Miami Dolphins will need to hit free agency looking for TEs

Durham Smythe Miami Dolphins Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports
Durham Smythe Miami Dolphins Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports /

The Miami Dolphins will have big holes to fill at several positions but the tight end will be one of the bigger issues the team faces this off-season.

Adam Shaheen is likely gone. Mike Gesicki returning would be a major shock (but a welcome one for many fans). Tanner Conner is raw but at least appears to be better than Hunter Long who can’t stay healthy. Durham Smythe is under contract and will likely become the senior TE on the team. Miami will get back Cethan Carter but Carter has yet to prove he has value to the team in his two years thus far.

Last year, Carter and Shaheen both missed the season. Shaheen had been traded but failed his physical and returned to Miami and was promptly put on IR. So what will the Dolphins do? They have to do something. Looking again at the roster, it’s not pretty for a head coach who needs very good TE play to be successful.

  • Durham Smythe
  • Cethan Carter
  • Hunter Long
  • Tanner Conner

There are free agents available but many will be expensive additions. Chris Grier had the foresight to draft Long to replace Gesicki but that didn’t work out, not yet.

Miami could go in a lot of directions here. The only player certain to return is Smythe. He has done what the team has wanted, he isn’t a number one TE but his contract isn’t bad and he is rounded enough to be able to block and catch passes but he isn’t elite.

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The Dolphins don’t need elite but they need better than serviceable. Protecting Tua and opening run lanes on the outside are critical needs in McDaniel’s offense and right now, the Dolphins don’t have anyone under contract for 2023 that can contribute at a high level consistently.

Miami will likely hit free agency looking to improve this unit and it could come in the early days of the market opening.