I rinsed the chicken as well as I possibly could, to make sure all the gel was off. What if there are small pieces of the gel stuck, and now I'm cooking it? Is it safe to eat or is it trash?
Don't worry, the materials in those pads are non-toxic. The absorbent material is silica (purified sand) or plant cellulose, and the plastic is thin and non-digestable. So if a small amount sticks to your food it's no big deal, just make sure it's cooked through as that will kill any bacteria in the gel that happens to be left. What I would do is let the chicken thaw and then rinse it thoroughly.