Although the Miami Dolphins have been showing interest in Jabar Gaffney, the veteran wide receiver wants to sign with the New England Patriots once he recovers from his quad injury, per the Miami Herald. The Dolphins are interesting in adding the productive vet, who was able to haul in 68 passes last season for the Washington Redskins. A good No. 3 receiver, Gaffney would be a big addition for the Dolphins and receive more playing time, but it makes more sense for him to play for the Patriots and have a shot at wining a Super Bowl title.
The New England Patriots released Deion Branch yesterday, and he would like to return to the Pats down the road as well. A few analysts feel like that is a likely scenario for both sides, so it might be a matter of which receiver the Patriots choose. It seems like the Pats reasoning for releasing Gaffney mainly had to do with his injury, as he is slightly more productive than Branch.
In any case, the No. 3 receiver in the Patriots offense next season will have an extremely low role in the passing game and will get 35 or so targets. Gaffney is still a useful receiver and would help the Pats out, and he is willing to take that reduced role to play with the Patriots. The Dolphins are smart to show interest in him, as they clearly have huge problems at the wide receiver position, and Gaffney would present a major upgrade for them.
We’ll see if the Pats feel like the interest is mutual at some point early in the regular season, but this is a situation to keep close tabs on. The Pats have four tight ends on the roster and four receivers, but they definitely have room for one more wideout. But who will it be? Gaffney or Branch?
You can follow Joe Soriano on Twitter @SorianoJoe.