One of the least talked about moves from this NFL offseason is Greg Olsen signing with the Seahawks. Although Olsen has dealt with injuries the past few years and is nearing the end of his career at 35, not too long ago, Olsen was one of the top tight-ends in the league. During Cam Newton’s 2015 MVP season, Greg Olsen was Cam’s #1 target with 77 receptions and over 1,100 yards.
Despite Olsen having recurrent foot injuries in 2018, he showed that he could still be proficient in 2019 when he returned. Playing in 14 of the Panthers 16 games, Olsen was able to pick up 597 receiving yards and play a role in an offense that was pretty much just Christian McCaffrey.
Although these numbers aren’t anywhere near what they were in 2015, it is still promising considering Olsen had less than 500 total receiving yards throughout 2017 and 2018 due to injuries. While Olsen hasn’t had a 1,000+ yard season since 2016, a change of scenery may be all he needs to get back on track.
Similar to the Panthers’ heavy usage of Olsen, Russell Wilson has also valued the tight-end position during his career. In Jimmy Graham’s 3 year tenure with the Seahawks, despite never playing a full season, Graham was one of Wilson’s top targets whenever he was on the field. While Graham has since moved on from the Seahawks, he played a prominent role in their offense; totaling 923 receiving yards in 2016 and 10 touchdowns in 2017.
In 2019, the Seahawks offense was finally beginning to click again with Chris Carson earning nearly 1,500 yards from scrimmage and a stunning rookie season from DK Metcalf. Despite having little depth at wide receiver, Metcalf and Lockett were able to combine for 1,957 receiving yards.
With the addition of Olsen’s playstyle to Seattle, Olsen will free up space for Lockett and Metcalf on the outside and remain a red-zone threat. Because of this, the Seahawks will continue to have a fast-paced offense with even more targets for top QB Russell Wilson.
Although Olsen has suffered injuries and is currently 35 years old, many tight-ends are able to stay efficient late into their 30s such as Benjamin Watson and future HOFer Antonio Gates. As long as Olsen is able to stay healthy, he still should have a lot to offer to the Seahawks.
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