When the Carolina Panthers released Greg Olsen a day after the Super Bowl, the veteran tight end knew he'd have options as a free agent.
And the more the three-time Pro-Bowler thought about what he was looking for, the more the Seahawks made sense to Olsen. On Monday, Olsen and the Seahawks made it official, with Olsen signing his contract after agreeing to terms on the deal last week. After arriving in Seattle and signing with Seattle, Olsen explained why it was in a lot of ways an easy choice. From a winning head coach to an elite quarterback to one of the NFL's best fanbases, Olsen knew Seattle was a good fit on a lot of levels.
"It was just too good of an opportunity to pass up," Olsen said. "Their track record of success, consistency of winning. I've played in this city many times, and just the fanbase, the excitement, that stadium is one of the more unique venues in all of sports. And obviously Coach (Pete) Carroll, playing with somebody like Russell (Wilson), it just checks so many boxes I was looking for, and I'm confident I can just come in and do my part and help try to put (us) over the edge."
As Olsen was weighing his options in free agency, one thing he heard from a lot of people, including Wilson, was a high opinion of how the Seahawks operate as an organization.
Everybody I talked to said the same thing—it’s a special place, they do things the right way, they treat people the right way. Greg Olsen
"Just the entire organization has been so first class, and that's everything," Olsen said. "When I did my research, everybody I talked to said the same thing—it's a special place, they do things the right way, they treat people the right way. And in my couple of days out here visiting with everybody, I kind of saw with my own eyes what everyone was talking about."
At 34, Olsen has already established himself as one of the best tight ends of his era. Olsen's 718 catches and 8,444 receiving yards both rank fifth all time among tight ends behind only Tony Gonzalez, Jason Witten, Antonio Gates and Shannon Sharpe. So when it came to picking a team, finding a winner was more important than adding to his individual legacy. And in Seattle, a team that has been to the playoffs eight times in 10 seasons under Carroll and general manager John Schneider, Olsen knows he'll have a good chance at playing for a championship in 2020.