Greg Olsen Signs With Seahawks, Potential for 2020 Fantasy Resurgence - Roto Street Journal
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Greg Olsen Signs With Seahawks, Potential for 2020 Fantasy Resurgence

Most thought Greg Olsen would be handing in the football pads for a microphone in 2020. Yet, the 34-year old, oft-injured tight end was signed by the Seahawks to a 1-year, $7 million deal, thus ending his legendary time with the Panthers. The Seahawks defeated both the Bills and Redskins for his services and, most importantly, gave Russell Wilson another red zone weapon.

The three-time Pro Bowler battled through a foot injury during 2017 and 2018, but was able to play 14 games in 2019, resulting in 597 yards and two touchdowns on 52 receptions. Still, a combination of his and Cam Newton‘s injuries have derailed his fantasy impact over the last three seasons.

With Cam’s Carolina future and overall ability in question, Olsen will be in for a major “Surrounding Talent” upgrade in Seattle with Russell Wilson.

According to Warren Sharp, from 2016-2018, Wilson targeted tight ends in the red zone on 33 percent of his passes — the second most in the NFL. These targets results in a 61 percent success rate and 5.3 yards per attempt, both the best in the league. Specifically, in 2017, Jimmy Graham led the league in targets inside both the 20 and 10 yard lines with 24 and 16 looks respectively, also topping the NFL with 10 Red Zone scores.

With Will Dissly and Jacob Hollister in-and-out of the lineup throughout 2019 — especially Dissly who was put on IR after only six games — Wilson’s previous marks floundered, as he dropped to 23rd in success rate and 18th in yards per attempt. Olsen should give Wilson a major boost, offering plenty of size and wiggle despite his age.

Granted, Dissly’s health following his torn Achilles will determine Olsen’s ultimate ceiling. According to Pete Carroll,  Dissly is “killing the rehab” after a minimally invasive procedure. In fact, the Seahawks “fully expect Dissly to be ready to be healthy and ready go by Week 1.”

Dissly has been a force on the field, hauling in 31 receptions, 418 yards, and 6 TDs across 10 games (50 catch, 700 yard, 10 TD pace). In fact, that’s really eight games considering he left in the first quarter of the two injury-marred contests. Across six of those eight full games, Dissly finished as a Top-10 TE, exceeding 12 FPs in each game. But that’s the rub — only 10 games across two full seasons thanks to two excruciating injuries in his Achilles and patella tendon.

Thus, the fantasy ceiling of both TEs could be capped. Still, Wilson has peppered the position inside the Red Zone, so the ceiling remains sky-high if either separates as a clear lead TE (or if the injury imp bites either TE again). Both bring 10+ TD upside to the table. With Dissly’s health uncertain, Olsen is currently preferred and slides into the “Upside TE2” tier at TE15, alongside the likes of Noah Fant and Mike Gesicki.

Though the TE waters are muddy, another big red zone body and athletic seam-stretcher only helps Wilson’s outlook. If he gets his wish and the Seahawks implement more up-tempo, no-huddle concepts, Wilson could explode in 2020.


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