Philadelphia Eagles: Greg Olsen chooses Seattle over Washington

(Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

Despite bypassing the Washington Redskins, Greg Olsen could still be a thorn in the Philadelphia Eagles’ side with the Seattle Seahawks in the playoffs.

For a while there, it looked like the Philadelphia Eagles would have to face off against Greg Olsen two times a year.

After being waived by Matt Rhule and the Carolina Panthers after nine seasons with the organization, Olsen, who has missed 18 games over the last three seasons, was finally free to test the open market, but really, a landing spot in our nation’s capital felt like a foregone conclusion.

Why? His head coach, Ron Rivera officially became the franchise’s latest head coach on January 1st.

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However, as these things so often go, Olsen opted to shop his services around before free agency officially opened up in March. He visited the Buffalo Bills, gave Rivera and company a shot to pitch their case, but ultimately, he decided to take his services to the Emerald City, where he will serve as Russell Wilson’s safety blanket opposite DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett.

Talk about a close call.

To be fair, Olsen isn’t the absolute star he used to be, at least not on the football field, but at the tender age of 35, he can still impact a game when healthy. Heck, for a team like Washington, who will presumably be transitioning away from their throwback power running scheme into something a bit more modern, Olsen could have been the perfect check down target for Dwayne Haskins as he prepares to learn his third system in as many years.

Despite having a solid number one receiver locked up in Terry McLaurin, Washington’s second-leading receiver in 2019 was running back Chris Thompson, a third-down back who only played 32 percent of the team’s offensive snaps. If Washington could have paired up Olsen with a healthy Jordan Reed and a Christian McCaffrey-type running back in the draft (sorry Derrius Guice), Haskins’ situation would be far more comfortable, not to mention viable, in 2020.

Wow, that’s a lot of value for a player who only signed a one-year, $7 million deal.

While it is fun to watch an NFC East rival botch what should have been a slam dunk signing, Olsen’s decision could still negatively affect the Eagles in 2020, potentially even 2021 depending on when the playoffs start.

After catching 524 passes for 6,463 yards and 39 touchdowns for Cam Newton and company in Carolina, Olsen will now be paired up with Russell Wilson, arguably the best player in the NFL at making plays from a broken pocket, in what has to be considered an all-in shot at Super Bowl 55.

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So while the Philadelphia Eagles won’t have to face Greg Olsen two times next season with the Washington Redskins, a pair of games that were already relatively easy, they will instead have to hope to avoid his new team, the Seattle Seahawks, in the playoffs. Kind of a mixed bag all things considered.