Dolphins’ Jalen Ramsey trade leaves tight end position empty

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

While we are all rightfully excited about the Jalen Ramsey trade, one looming issue glares out:

The Dolphins literally only have one (1) tight end on the roster.

After trading away a third-round pick and TE Hunter Long to the Rams, the only tight end under contract on the entire Miami Dolphins roster is Durham Smythe, who had 129 yards receiving on the year last season. Smythe, who caught 15 of his 20 targets last season, is apparently primed for a massive leap in usage next season.

However, seeing as how Smythe is the only tight end on the roster, the Dolphins will probably be in the market for one either in free agency or via the draft in April.

I did do a piece on how the Dolphins could draft Mike Gesicki’s replacement, but that would require using their first-round pick on the tight end when other needs seem more pressing. That was also written when the Dolphins had their third-rounder, which no longer exists.

The third-round pick traded to the Rams was actually the Patriots’ pick, which was acquired in exchange for wide receiver DeVante Parker last season. It still leaves the Dolphins with only four picks in the draft, the lowest amount in the league.

The good news, though, is that from all the contract re-structures last week, the Dolphins do have some cap space to work with if they want to sign another tight end, which seems like the logical way to approach the issue.

Free agent tight ends include Mike Gesicki, a familiar face who will likely be too expensive. Cheaper options could be guys like Dalton Schultz, Austin Hooper, Hayden Hurts, Geoff Swaim, or former Dolphin, Adam Shaheen.

Whatever the Dolphins brass decides to do, whether it’s drafting a tight end or signing one in free agency, the position group will look different — and that may not be a bad thing. The entire tight end room combined for less than 500 yards receiving for the entirety of 2022. Perhaps a shakeup at the position was in order anyway.

If the Dolphins do decide to take a tight end early in the draft, someone like Darnell Washington or Michael Mayer, it could get really exciting offensively for Miami. Pairing one of those rookie tight ends with an already loaded offensive unit could mesh very well with a Vic Fangio-led defense, featuring Jalen Ramsey and Bradley Chubb.

However, the Dolphins may consider stopping the bleeding of the offensive line early, and who could blame them? Tight ends are not as valued as offensive linemen and they could very likely sign one in free agency for relatively cheap.

Regardless, if you’re a Dolphins fan, you should feel pretty excited about the moves this team is making. The tight end position is a bit concerning right now, but the front office clearly has a plan in mind. You don’t just come across Jalen Ramsey’s every day — enjoy the trade and get excited for the season.

In case you wanted an update on how Jalen Ramsey is feeling about the trade, here is his latest tweet: