Greg Olsen Set For Pro Bowl Season

The Bears drafted Greg Olsen with the 31st pick in the NFL draft in 2007, they did so because he fell to them. He was a talent that should have gone earlier but he fell all the way to the Bears. It was a no brainer to snatch up this 6-foot-5 260-pound 4.5 40-yard dash athlete. Olsen was the highest rated TE in the draft and his ceiling unlimited.

While Olsen hasn’t become the instant star in his first two years in the league it is safe to say that he will be in 2009. Olsen’s camp to this point has been phenomenal. He was named the “starter” early in camp and deservedly so. Although the term starter doesn’t really mean much because it only means the “starter” plays the first snap of the game, Olsen is clearly the best TE on the team.

He is a special talent on a level that few TEs in the league achieve. He makes all sorts of catches and is a nightmare of a match up for both LBs and safeties. His size is the major match up problem for for safeties and his speed and athleticism is a match up nightmare for the linebackers in the league.

Now in his third year it’s apparent that Olsen is extremely comfortable in his element. Plus with the addition of some guy by the name of Jay Cutler in a trade that received some attention during the off-season he has a QB that can I think get him the ball. Olsen can make any catch out there and he seems to make those catches with ease. He can make the leaping grab over the defender as he has during camp, he can lay out make a grab, he can go up between defenders in double coverage and win that battle as well.

To say that the expectations are high for Olsen may be an understatement. He will likely be Cutler’s number one target and could easily lead the team in receptions. He can be the number one receiver that helps the Bears win a lot of games and he takes the pressure off of the younger players. With Devin Hester’s speed on the outside it opens up things in the middle of the defense for Olsen to work. The Bears’ offense will take huge advantage of Olsen as a weapon and rightfully so.

Olsen is an absolute beast with the only knock on his game being his blocking. But there are not a lot of TEs that offer both superb blocking ability and catching ability. That combination is rare and in Olsen’s case may come with more time. Even if it doesn’t his value in the passing game is immeasurable.

Olsen was a solid performer last year with 54 receptions for 574 yards. Solid numbers for a TE, but you can count on Olsen’s numbers to go up this year. Exactly how much I can’t predict but it will be enough to land him among the most productive TEs in the league.

For more in-depth discussion on the Chicago Bears’ training camp go to Midway Illustrated

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