Mike Gesicki Injury Report: Will he play in Week 15?

Mike Gesicki Injury Report: Will he play in Week 15?

Miami Dolphins TE Mike Gesicki and his fantasy status for Week 15 is in doubt after sustaining an injury in the team’s 33-27 loss to the Chiefs on Sunday. With the fantasy football playoffs in full swing, not knowing if Mike Gesicki will play against the New England Patriots on Sunday could be a massive blow to the Dolphins and fantasy teams as they make a playoff push.

Update, Sunday, December 20th: Mike Gesicki is inactive for the Miami Dolphins Week 15 matchup with the New England Patriots.

Mike Gesicki’s fantasy status uncertain after injuring his shoulder on Sunday

Unfortunately for the Dolphins, their loss on Sunday could have lasting implications. Sitting currently at 8-5 and in the seventh and final spot in the playoff picture, the last thing they could afford was massive injuries. 

After a catch in the fourth quarter, TE Mike Gesicki was dragged down on a tackle and landed hard on his right shoulder. Trainers came on the field quickly to tend to their top tight end, who was having a monster game when they needed it the most.

When he walked off the field, Gesicki gave a thumbs up to the fans in Hard Rock Stadium’s stands. However, he did it with his left as trainers supported his right arm, not letting it move. Gesicki went straight to the locker room and was ruled out shortly after. 

Before his early exit, Gesicki was having a career day. He caught five of six passes for 65 yards along with two touchdowns. Sunday was his first multi-score game since Week 16 of 2019 and only the second time in his three-year career.

Head coach Brian Flores its “too early to tell” if Mike Gesicki will play in Week 15

Unfortunately for those in fantasy or fans of the team, there are no quick answers. Coach Brian Flores said he didn’t have an immediate update on Gesicki when asked post-game. 

 “It’s too early right now. They’re still being evaluated. I’ll probably have more information later in the week.”

Gesicki was scheduled to have an MRI on his shoulder Monday afternoon. 

Rookie QB Tua Tagovailoa checked in on his top receiver on the day to see how he was following the game.

“I had the opportunity to go in after the game, see Mike, talk to him. He’s really hurting,” Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa said. “My thoughts and prayers are with him. The rest of the team is praying for him. There were a group of guys that came after me too, but you hate to see that for someone like him.”

Mike Gesiski is not the only injury we need to monitor moving forward in Miami.

WR DeVante Parker left the game in the second quarter with a leg injury. Despite being seen trying to run on the sidelines, he never returned to the game.

Parker has been the Dolphins’ leading receiver this season, catching 56 of 89 targets for 677 yards and four touchdowns. He has been forced to carry the load after the team lost Preston Williams in Week 8 for the second year in a row.

Also injured in the game was WR/KR Jakeem Grant. NFL Networks’ Ian Rapoport said that Grant is considered week-to-week with a hamstring injury.

Mike Gesicki has been one of the few bright spots in a position devoid of top talent

If you played fantasy and passed on Travis Kelce, George Kittle, and even Darren Wallers, you likely were banking on finding the guy who had the best shot to outperform his ADP. This year, Mike Gesicki has fit that mold.

Gesicki came into the game as the TE9 on the season but left as the TE5, thanks to his 23.5 PPR performance. 

His 602 receiving yards are fourth amongst tight ends, and his six touchdowns are tied with five others for fifth-most. Over the last three weeks, Tua had looked Gesicki’s way often. Four of his six touchdowns on the season and 188 yards have come during the previous three games.

What has helped Mike Gesicki has been his ability to be used offline and in the slot. In 2020, Gesicki has lined up on a higher percentage of snaps (66%) than any other tight end.

The Dolphins know he is too talented to keep stuck on the line blocking. He has been asked to stay and block on just 2% of his offensive snaps. With 88% of his offensive snaps coming from the slot or out wide, he can run a more diverse route tree than just options and seams. Gesicki’s 0.36 fantasy points per route is eighth-highest amongst tight ends (minimum 250 routes ran).

If we know Mike Gesicki will not play on Sunday, fantasy options are limited

We have seen all year long how hard it can be to find starting fantasy talent off waivers. If we find out Mike Gesicki will not play in Week 15, then it’s panic mode for fantasy. It was not a great matchup (fifth vs. tight ends), but at least he is talented.

Durham Smythe and Adam Shaheen will fill in for Gesicki but don’t get too cute. Yes, Miami will need to throw to someone, but that’s a hard pill to swallow in the second round of your fantasy playoffs. If anything, Lynn Bowden Jr. is going to see the boost on the Dolphins. He played a majority of the snaps out of the slot and had seven catches on nine targets for 82 yards. However, he doesn’t carry TE eligibility, so not helping us right now.

Irv Smith Jr. should be a guy high on your list. He is rostered in just 6% of Yahoo leagues and 3.8% in ESPN. In his last two games played without Kyle Rudolph, Smith Jr. has racked up six catches for 73 yards and three touchdowns. He’ll get a Chicago Bears defense that is 30th in fantasy points to tight ends at 15.56 per game.

Tyler Higbee is another option for Week 15. He is rostered in 48% of Yahoo and 43.5% of ESPN leagues. On Sunday, the Rams take on the New York Jets. Need I say more?

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Tommy Garrett is a writer for PFN covering Fantasy Football. You can read more of his work here and follow him at @TommygarrettPFN on Twitter.