The Seattle Seahawks made their first big move before NFL free agency opens up.
The team announced Tuesday it agreed to terms with tight end Greg Olsen. The one-year, $7-million deal, according to ESPN, will bring a veteran presence to the position that held an oft-injured young star and a (disappointing) replacement.
The Seahawks were competing with Buffalo Bills, Washington Redskins and FOX Sports as potential landing spots for the three-time Pro Bowl player. But Seattle, boasting franchise quarterback Russell Wilson, beat the competition. Olsen was strongly considering his other options, especially with former head coach Ron Rivera now in Washington, but “the lure of playing with Wilson in Seattle was just too strong,” according to ESPN.
How will the Seahawks utilize Olsen?
After Will Dissly suffered a season-ending injury in the middle of the season, Jacob Hollister was forced into a bigger role and came up, well, short. Olsen will give Wilson a reliable target and a good inside option to pair with D.K. Metcalf and Tyler Lockett on the outside.
Wilson was uncharacteristically vocal about what the Seahawks need to improve upon next season, saying the offense needs to be more aggressive and pointing to the Kansas City Chiefs as an example.
“We’ve always been really good at two-minute offense, we’ve always been really good in those end of the half, not always hurry up situations but those up-tempo moments,” Wilson said. “The reality is this: I think the defense gets tired and the second thing is I really know kind of what I want and how I want to get after them. Especially in moments. And guys just make plays in those moments.
“The freedom of just going after it and scoring as many points, you know? That’s kind of what the Chiefs do, to be honest with you. Andy Reid and (Patrick) Mahomes, they do a really good job at getting up to the ball, playing with their playmakers and finding ways to make plays.”
The Chiefs notably use tight end Travis Kelce for a bulk of their offense. While the Seahawks have never looked to just one tight end, or really a tight end ever, they have been using two-tight-end sets more. While Olsen’s own injury history is a cause for concern, he will be able to pair nicely with Dissly, who he can also mentor, if both can stay healthy.
Olsen tallied 597 catches and two touchdowns on 52 catches through 14 games. Prior to 2019, he only played in 16 total games across the 2017 and ‘18 seasons. Olsen aggravated his foot in 2017 and ruptured his plantar fascia in December of the following year. But, when he was healthy in Carolina, he had three consecutive seasons with 1,000-plus yards.
Seattle struck out with Jimmy Graham and never utilized him for the player he was. It seems the Seahawks have found what they’re looking for in Dissly and now Olsen. In return, Olsen is getting what he wants: a chance to contend.