Chicago Sun-Times

What will the Bears do with Greg Olsen?

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As the Bears scrutinize their offense and contemplate its future, the club needs to figure out how they view tight end Greg Olsen.

He enters the final year of his contract, which calls for him to make a modest $900,000, and Olsen's agent Drew Rosenhaus will surely push for a lucrative extension. The Bears have traditionally been proactive under general manager Jerry Angelo, but they may be more guarded this offseason and, perhaps, in the future.

The first task, though, is for offensive coordinator Mike Martz to weigh in on Olsen's role. Toward the end of the season, Martz was very complimentary of Olsen.

"Greg's numbers in the passing game are not what they could and probably should be for his abilities, but what we've done with him is he lines up at the line of scrimmage, and he's the point of attack," Martz said. ''But he's also lined up at fullback and has been a lead blocker. We line him up at wide receiver. He does so many things for us, and just by being able to do that flexibility, it puts a lot of pressure on the defense, though his numbers wouldn't indicate that.''

That sounds good.

But the reality is, Olsen's numbers dipped dramatically from 2009 to 2010. He had fewer catches (60 to 41), receiving yards (612 to 404) and receiving touchdowns (eight to five).

If Martz wants to take advantage of Olsen's versatility, as he suggested, then the Bears should consider a long-term deal to keep him around. But if he doesn't, then the Bears should shop him and trade him.

The New England Patriots were the team most interested last offseason, but they invested two draft picks at the position, and both players (Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez) produced as rookies.

The other option for the Bears would be to have Olsen play out the final year of his rookie year then have the flexibility to use a tag on him if he has a monster 2011 season. But, again, Rosenhaus is an aggressive agent, who isn't afraid to use any tactic to get his client's paid.

Besides, Rosenhaus has had some success at that position: he negotiated a six-year, $36.1 million contract for Kellen Winslow Jr. with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The deal included $20.1 million in guarantees.

What helps the Bears, though, is the presence of Kellen Davis, who also enters the final year of his rookie deal. Davis has had flashes of brilliance, and one NFC North personnel executive said he has the potential to be like Visanthe Shiancoe, a player who emerges from the shadow of a high draft pick.

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18 Comments

"Toward the end of the season, Martz was very complimentary of Olsen."

He wsa also very complimentary of Olsen during the season before he met him, etc etc. In fact can you name someone on the offense Martz didn't love? "Best Recievers he has ever worked with"

"Greg's numbers in the passing game are not what they could and probably should be for his abilities, but what we've done with him is he lines up at the line of scrimmage, and he's the point of attack,"

His offense ranked 30th find a new point of attack.

Martz said. ''But he's also lined up at fullback and has been a lead blocker."

Remind me how good were the Bears in short yardage again.

" We line him up at wide receiver. He does so many things for us, and just by being able to do that flexibility, it puts a lot of pressure on the defense, though his numbers wouldn't indicate that.''

So Olsen puts a ton of pressure on the opposing defense and helped lead his team to a 30th ranked offense. Sure doesn't seem like much pressure.

His numbers don't indicate it?? Really? What a shock to my system.

So when most fans with a clue said Olsen's numbers would drop in this offense the moment Martz was hired it was just a lucky guess. But then Angelo had a chance to get something by trading Olsen who seemed to want a trade. But as usual Angelo over valued his draft picks and was seeking a first rounder or high second rounder for a career under performing TE.

Now Angelo will be given a chance to over pay the mighty Greg Olsen who has done nothing to earn a big contract other than be drafted in the first round. I say let Olsen walk, I don;t think he is that intrested in football, after all his movie career is about to takeoff.

http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/1197233-thor/trailers/

Give Olsen a new football contract? Nay Greg Olsen, I say thee nay.

Ps. Winslow is over paid.

They need to extend Forte 1st before they do anything else! He is hands down the best weapon we have on offense!

GO BEARS!!!

I shall olsen getting better at blocking and doing anything to help out the team player and blocked better than manamaula that's who we need to get ride off and play oslen he us our best reciever not knots and hester don't fight for the ball just ask laywer milloy how good he is

Yeah but Millow is like 37 and just finished his 15th year. He kind of sucks now, in the last 9 years he has 6 picks, in the last 2 he has zero.

Last six games of the season he had 82 yards and 1 TD. He had 13 catches and a 6 yard average. That's over 6 games during the most important part of the season.

In the Martz offense he saw his yards, TD's, Avg, and Rec drop. This is not the offense for Olsen. When the Bears focused on running the ball more in the second half of the season Olsen was also a Moot point.

1 Big play against a old slow safety on a 7-9 team does not mean you give the guy a raise and a big new contract.

I'll take the large 6 game sample over one play.

ahhhhh......olson is a BUST loosers. al he isa good for is CARPETTING MY MOOMYS FLOORS!!!! get tah BUM off da bears now he is a looser just liek most of yo LOOSER bears fans!!!!!!!!!

but you guys now me old crap-ton just trying to be poataive..

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Cryton, how about I nice warm cup of shut the hell up!!!

You and Crap-ton are one and the same!

Tripper | February 23, 2011 7:08 PM | Reply
"Cryton, how about I nice warm cup of shut the hell up!!!"

"You and Crap-ton are one and the same! "

Tripper where you been, Aruba again?? Hahahahaha.

Oh and thank you no you can keep all the " I nice warm cup of shut the hell up!!!" for yourself. Not sure what that means anyway, but by all means jug a lug buddy.

By the way, maybe you don't know this little fact like everyone else on the site but Crap-ton is Kevin Armstead. This is not a guess Kevin came out on the board and freely admits to it, this happened months ago. Brando was actually the first person to point it out. You can go back and check the archives, Kevin messed up on one of his Crap-ton posts and the secret was out. Pretty much everyone knows this. Well everyone except you.

So, and I know you are used to this but it never gets old for me. Once again Tripper you are wrong. Do you actually work on putting your foot in your mouth? Is it like some yoga class you take or something? This was almost a two footer for you, keep up the good work in your foot fetish yoga class there Rex Ryan Jr.


Trade Olsen. All he is is decent at best. Kellen Davis is a more complete TE. Bigger target, better blocker, better at breaking tackles and holds on to the ball better. Let's get whatever we can for Olsen and send him on his way.

Haha good one with the thor video creighton! olsen looks just like him lol.
too funny dude.

The pass catching stats probably describe about 25% of the job for the tight end position for the Bears. In other words, stats don't really mean jack. If you look ONLY at his receiving, does anybody seriously think that Olsen us anything but an elite player? He can stretch the field, catch the ball in traffic and excells in the red zone. The question most fans had with Olsen last year was related to the 25% factor above. He can can catch it, but can he do anything else?

And the answer is YES.

Greg Olsen very quietly took a big step with his blocking last year. He is now a complete tight end who can do everything you want in a three-down player at the position. He is now a blue chip player entering the prime of his career. This means that on every play the opposing DC knows that if he tries to cover Olsen with a linebacker, he is asking to give up a big play; but if he brings in his nickel back, he is likely to see Forte running down his throat. That is a reality that does not show up in the stats. That is why Martz doesn't want to lose Olsen.

The intriguing fact is that Kellen Davis took a big step too. He is the reason a pretty good tight end, Des Clark, was on the inactive list all year.

The Bears need to get this right. You can't be successful in the NFL by spending high draft choices, developing players into their prime, and then letting them walk without any compensation. Bottom line is that they need to do something with Olsen this off-season. They need to either sign him or trade him. The big mistake would be to do nothing.

Olsen is worth keeping.He's young enough and has talent enough to adjust to almost anything.Few tight ends have his kind of speed , and his blocking is consistently improving.

MSBearsFan | February 24, 2011 8:59 AM | Reply
"Greg Olsen very quietly took a big step with his blocking last year"

No he really didn't he was just used differently in blocking, you can't put him on a linmen or LB, they used him in running counters to pick up a DB. Not a hard job.

"opposing DC knows that if he tries to cover Olsen with a linebacker, he is asking to give up a big play; but if he brings in his nickel back, he is likely to see Forte running down his throat."

Not really, teams have been putting DB's on Olsen since his first week in the league, long before Martz was here.

Ms you list blocking as 25 percent and recieving as 25 percent. Please tell me what is the other 50 percent of a TE's job?

Olsen does not catch well in traffic, his passing numbers all declined including average. He is one of the easiest players to shut down on the team. As for him making Forte and the running game better, dream on. You seem to forget the Bears rushing attack was ranked 22nd and what made Forte better was the fact that Martz utalizes duel threat backs better than most people. Teams where not worried about Olsen if they where Lawyer Millow would never have been covering him. In the Martz offense you don't know what the RB will which makes you account for him.

As for blocking considering you had a 22nd ranked rushing attack and the only threat. I would not say the run blocking was very good, and the pass blocking was the worst in the league and Olsen was a big part of that reason. Just cause Martz says something does not mean it's true. He lies all the time.

"The intriguing fact is that Kellen Davis took a big step too. He is the reason a pretty good tight end, Des Clark, was on the inactive list all year."

He had one catch for 19 yards all season. He was used as a blocker when BM was hurt. When BM started playing Davis sat. BM was about as bad a blocker asa you will ever see. How exactly did Davis take a big step forward when he almost never blocked and only had 1 play all year? Did I miss something?

" Bottom line is that they need to do something with Olsen this off-season. They need to either sign him or trade him. The big mistake would be to do nothing."

If Olsen is as great as you say MS, and Martz loves and needs him as you say, why would trade him, and why would the Bears trade him? If you like him so much wouldn't you want to keep him? Seems kind of strange to love a player this much and then suggest trading him. By the way they tried trading him and nobody wanted him. Cause he is great. Sorry.

Your not a blue chip player when your yards per catch is ranked 54th among TE's, Yards per game 29th among TE's. You seem to forget that Greg Olsen is Cutlers primary target even in this offense, him and Forte. Sorry but those last 6 games told you exactly what Olsen was. He does it every year he disappears for multiple games. He is easy to shut down.

Among that other drivel you asked a reasonable question.

In the past good teams have traded players like Olsen, even though he is a good player that they like, because they can't afford to sign every player to a second contract. This is because of the salary cap. Of course we don't know there will be a new salary cap, but there probably will be something. The Pats play this game like a drum, which is how they get mountains of draft picks, but lose guys like Richard Seymour. Rather than wait for good players to leave, they evaluate them a year ahead, and make the tough choices on who they can afford to keep. I can't stand the Pats, but one reason they are successful on a long term basis is that they sign their core players early and let the others go before they can walk as free agents. This gives the team a steady stream of young players in the pipeline like those rookie tight ends that Sean talked about.

That's why you might trade Olsen now.

If the Bears decide they can get production out of Davis and Manumaleuna, they could try to cash in on Olsen before they lose him to free agency.

I have not heard anybody confirm that the Bears were shopping Olsen last year and that's not what Sean said. They listened to offers and said no.

I have a suggestion for you that will probably lead to a 10 page rant. Instead of looking for meaningless stats, why don't you try just watching the games? Olsen blocked linebackers and linemen last year. I saw him do it. For a lousy running team, the Bears were able to run the ball pretty well against the World Champions. Neither the Falcons nor the Steelers managed to do that.

MS if thats what you call blocking LB's and O-lineman than OK. Do the names M. Turner and R Mendenhall mean anything to you, Forte is a better receiving RB than a running RB. They probable weren't that worried about him or the way martz runs his O.

MSBearsFan replied to comment from Creighton
I have a suggestion for you that will probably lead to a 10 page rant. Instead of looking for meaningless stats, why don't you try just watching the games?

ahhhh hoe daer you!! do you now who i am LOOSER??? let me remind you sense you mite be lost. i am king. i now evertinh their is to now on abot the bears. i am never rong do you now why? is sbecause ia am LLAWSY ERIGHT ASN I ALLWAYS GIVE FACTS!!!!!!

you want to se a ten page rant looser? ahh hahaaa i wil giver you a Milion page super ddup[er megaRANT snse i dont have girfrielnd ans i dont have a jobi have all teh free time to do that!!!!

ohhh msbearsfan next time i will realy SMACK you arord leik i do to brando ans dkevin. you will see then you will think twice about qrustioning my getaness.

but you guys now me old crap-ton just trying to be podative

ps my my is getting warmer.....almsot time for me pink panties to slip on ??? :)

Well Ms you can call it whatever you want, I have been right about Olsen for years. Sorry I watched him play, he's not that good and his numbers say so including his sack total and how may times he released when he was suppose to stay in and block and on how many he blocks he whiffed on. As for Money, the Bears can pay him, but you didn't say money you said trade him, you said it at the begining of the year too.

Tell me do you think this is the best system for a TE? Martz doesn't that's why you have 305 pound Tight end who by the way actually gets most of the blocking assignments I know you feel Olsen stopped every player in the world, but you gotta ask yourself if Olsen is doing all that great blocking, why did Cutler keep getting sacked by teams blitzing. That's Olsen's primary blocking role in pass protection, blitz pick up. I also know what PFF ranked him as a blocker and it wasn't good. Improved yes, but good? No way. So his blocking improved a little but his recieving went way down.

Outside of calling it drivel you didn't actually refute anything I said.

Please tell me on the one reception Davis had, what was it you saw that made you think he was the next great TE?

TheBears basically led the lead or were at the bottom of the league in Sacks, TFL, Pressures, and QB hits. So again if Olsen is this great blocker, and he is on the edge and the Bears basically used 7-8 man protection all year then where was all this great blocking on a team that was the worst blocking team in the league?

Also I never said he was good reciever I said he was fast and went down on first contact. By the way Greg was playing for a contract extension this year, so what you saw was, was you see with most players these days, him giving his all to try and land big money. I thought Olsen improved and did what he could, but that does not make him a blue chip and he does not deserve 36 mil.

Hey maybe we can go over your old posts and find all the great players you have spotted over the years. Or how many times you have actually said to trade Olsen. Better go check the archives.

Have you named that Catch Davis had this year? Is it like the Bear Buster Bomb, or the Big Mack Davis Attack?

Just because someone has a different opinion that you does not mean you always need to get hostile Ms. I only pointed out some things, and asked you a few questions, none of which you actually answered and you did contradict yourself twice.

Maybe if Olsen puts on a cape and winggy helmet and starts walking around with a big hammer I will like him better.

I think we should either trade him, or sign him to a mid-range contract ($3-4 mil per year) for 4-5 years. If he doesn't fit the Martz system, you have to trade him, but considering how bad Manumaleuna was this year, I would rather jettison the dough boy, and keep the God of Thunder (it's creepy how much he looks like the actor), who still has a chance to play at a decent level for the next 4-5 years.

Kellen Davis is more the type of guy we should look for as a third TE. We need someone stout enough to block a LB in a 3-4 on the outside, but also nimble enough to slip into the pattern, and not look like they are going to fall down. Manu took 3 months to recover from a knee scope last year, and will probably take at least that long, because of the extra strain he puts on his knees by being overweight, without the leg strength around the knees ti support it. He probably had it for a long time, but not being able to strengthen the knee this past offseason, and now the same thing this offseason, and he is not going to be able to anchor in 2011.

We can bring in an undrafted blocking TE, or sign one of many guys on the street that can help. We don't need Manu if that's all we get out of him, but we can't afford to let him go AND trade Olsen. We have too many other needs to spend a draft pick on a guy like Stocker (3rd or 4th round at the latest) who can fill Martz's TE profile.

Joe I agree I would much rather cut Poppin Fresh than Olsen.

As for signing Olsen his agent is looking for a lucrative deal for him. The other thing is Olsen does not hold a lot value at this point and if you do a sign and trade and give him like 4-5 million you will turn teams off. His current contract makes it much easier for any team to absorb and not have to worry about it not working out.

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This page contains a single entry by Sean Jensen published on February 23, 2011 11:17 AM.

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