The Steelers signed receiver Gunner Olszewski to a two-year contract.
"I got to meet everybody, talk to everybody, and I'm real excited," said Olszewski. "I'm looking forward to just putting on the black and yellow and playing football no matter where that's at, whether it's at receiver or just returning kicks. Whatever I can do to help this team win ball games."
Olszewski spent three seasons with the New England Patriots after signing with them as an undrafted rookie free agent following the 2019 NFL Draft. He played in 36 games, starting two, and was used primarily as a return specialist. He has a career 23.3-yard kickoff return average and a 12.6-yard punt return average.
Olszewski played in 16 games in 2021, finishing the season with 18 kickoff returns for 416 yards, a 23.1-yard average, including a long of 37 yards. He had 26 punt returns for 309 yards, an 11.9-yard average with a long of 27 yards and 10 fair catches. He also had two receptions for 31 yards and one carry for nine yards.
He had his best season in 2020 when he finished the season with a 17.3-yard punt return average, which ranked first in the NFL and was the highest return average in Patriots history and the second-highest in the NFL since 1970, despite missing the first three games of the season on the Reserve/Injured List.
His efforts in 2020 earned him Associated Press First Team All-Pro and Sporting News All-Pro honors, as well as being named to the Pro Football Weekly All-NFL Team and Pro Football Writers of America All-AFC Team. He also earned AFC Special Teams Player of the Week honors for his Week 13 performance against the Los Angeles Chargers. He finished the game with three punt returns for 145 yards, including a 70-yard return for a touchdown and a 61-yard return.
His rookie season he returned 20 punts for 179 yards, a 9.0-yard average, with a long of 22 yards.
Olszewski played collegiately Bemidji State, a Division II school in Minnesota. He was a starting cornerback and return specialist but switched to receiver with the Patriots. He was the NSCI Defensive Player of the Year in 2018 and following his pro day got an invitation to the Patriots rookie minicamp and was signed following the tryout.
Steelers agreed to terms with WR Gunner Olszewski on a two-year contract