Carolina Panthers tight end Greg Olsen said he’s looked up to Dallas Cowboys tight end Jason Witten ever since Witten hosted him on a recruiting visit to Tennessee in 2002.
Olsen ended up going to Miami, but he’s kept up with Witten over the years and spent time with him at the Pro Bowl a couple of years ago.
“I’ve been able to meet him a few times. But he’s a guy I’ve watched from a distance a long time and have an incredible amount of respect for his performance, how he carries himself, how he handles his business,” Olsen said. “He’s the epitome of a pro.”
Witten trails only Tony Gonzalez in career catches and receiving yards among tight ends. But Olsen admires Witten’s longevity: He’s played in 196 consecutive games, a streak that dates to his rookie season of 2003.
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Olsen, who last week passed Wesley Walls as the Panthers’ receiving leader among tight ends, said he reminded Witten of his Tennessee recruiting visit when they were together at the Pro Bowl.
“I think it made him feel a little old,” Olsen said. “But he’s a great dude. He’s a great guy.”