Why Gunner Olszewski downplayed first NFL catches

Ryan Hannable
October 11, 2019 - 10:28 am

FOXBOROUGH -- Due to some injuries at wide receiver for the Patriots, rookie Gunner Olszewski saw extended action -- over 50 snaps -- and hauled in two passes for 34 yards in the 35-14 win over the Giants Thursday night.

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The two catches were the first of his career, but the Bemidji State product downplayed it afterwards.

"It's awesome," he said. "(Jakobi Meyers) told me too on the sideline, like 'Congrats, man,' but I return punts every game so I am used to touching the ball. I didn't really think about it much, just made sure I (caught) the thing."

Prior to Thursday night, Meyers and Olszewski haven't seen much action on offense, but they knew eventually their numbers would be called.

“Oh we’re up in the virtual room doing walkthroughs every day after practice," Olszewski said. "We’re the last two out of the building every day. Troy Brown is on us, harping on us, about being ready and being one play away. That happened tonight, one play away and we were in there. We did our part. We have a lot to improve on. We’re going to watch the film and see a lot of stuff that we can improve on and do better but we’re ready to go.”

He added: “It’s huge. Obviously you go out there and expect to catch the ball just like you catch it in practice all throughout the week. It comes back to practice and being focused. Treating every day at practice like it’s a game and knowing you’ve got to catch every ball that comes your way.”

Even though he downplayed his first NFL catch, Olszewski still noted he does get a little nervous considering the crowd at Gillette Stadium is just a tad bigger compared to Bemidji State.

“Of course, there’s always excitement," he said. "I mean its Thursday Night Football under the lights. I love being at Gillette Stadium in front of our fans. That always gives me a little jitters, running out there and seeing how many people are watching us play football. Compared to my college, obviously no knock on them, it’s a lot of fans.”

Depending on how long Phillip Dorsett and Josh Gordon are out of the lineup, Olszewski may have more games like Thursday coming his way.

Related: Chase Winovich reacts to first touchdown since high school