Greg Olsen had his best season in the NFL, Gary Barnidge had his first regular-season touchdown, while Ben Hartsock and Richie Brockel just looked to get snaps. It may have not been an even year for the Panthers four tight ends, but any questions about their starter have been completely erased.
Former general manager Marty Hurney was, at times, a little too trade happy. His willingness to wheel and deal with draft picks ultimately caused a drain on the organization's talent reserves though a mixture of strange risks, and draft busts. When he decided to send a third round pick to the Chicago Bears for tight end Greg Olsen, it was a move that made too much sense for everyone involved. The Bears were squandering his ability as a receiver, as then-offensive coordinator Mike Martz was desperate to get an in-line blocker, while Rob Chudzinski in Carolina wanted a player he could pair with Cam Newton for the next five years. The result was arguably the best trade of Hurney's career.
69 receptions, 843 yards, 5 touchdowns -- the statistics alone put Olsen in elite status for the 2012 season. Finishing 4th in yards at his position is impressive enough, but it's all the little things that he wont get credit for that set Olsen apart.
Carolina Panthers tight ends: 2012 position review
Cat Scratch Reader | Feb 6