Buccaneers might steal a former Patriots tight end for Baker Mayfield

This would be underwhelming...
New England Patriots v Pittsburgh Steelers
New England Patriots v Pittsburgh Steelers / Cooper Neill/GettyImages

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have been linked to a free-agent tight end on PFF. Brad Spielberger listed landing spots for upcoming free-agent running backs and tight ends and the Buccaneers were only attached to one. That player is Mike Gesicki, who has previously played for the Dolphins and Patriots.

The Dolphins drafted Gesicki with a second-round pick in 2018 out of Penn State and he had his best season in 2021 when he nabbed 73 catches for 780 yards. His career-high in touchdowns came the year before when he found the end zone six times.

In 2023, Gesicki signed with the Patriots, staying in the AFC East. He had his worst season since his rookie year tallying just 29 catches for 244 yards and two scores. Now, of course, a lot of that could be blamed on the poor quarterback play in New England this past season.

As for why Spielberger thinks the Bucs would be an ideal spot for Gesicki, he says that Baker Mayfield (assuming he returns) and the offense could use help in the red zone and Gesicki could be of assistance in that department.

"The Buccaneers’ 48.1% red-zone conversion rate in 2023 ranked 28th despite the presence of a lot of big-bodied pass catchers, but here they add another who can be flexed out wide or be used in his standard role as the big slot. Gesicki is not a blocker, but this move has some shades of Cameron Brate’s role in Tampa’s offense back in the day as the move tight end who always saw targets on third downs and in the red zone."

Brad Spielberger

Could Mike Gesicki make sense with the Bucs?

Truthfully, this move would feel underwhelming to Bucs fans. It's true that the team could use a tight end this offseason but does Gesicki add anything to the team that Cade Otton doesn't? Otton had some drop issues in 2023 and Payne Durham appears to be more of a blocking tight end.

The biggest name at the tight end spot in free agency is definitely Dalton Schultz, who played for the Texans this past season. The Texans have plenty of cap space to keep Schultz if they wanted to but he'll be a highly-sought after name in free agency.

Sticking with Gesicki, sure he'd be help at a position that could use some fine-tuning but it doesn't feel as though he'd be a huge help to the offense. This would mostly be looked at as a "meh" signing if it did happen.