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Igor Olshansky: View from a Chargers blog

I asked my friend DaBolts over at Bolts From The Blue to give me the scoop on Igor O. Here's what he sent..

The Chargers drafted Igor Olshansky in the second round of the 2004 draft.  He was born in the Ukraine and came to San Francisco when he was nine.  He didn't start playing football until his junior year in high school. 2004 through 2007 were good years both for Olshansky and the defense.  He has always been amazingly strong, one of the best on the Chargers in the weight room.  The hope was that as his technique continued to evolve he might turn into an elite 3-4 defensive end.  The Chargers ranked third in rushing defense in 2004 and seventh in 2006; at least in part due to Olshansky.  After the 2007 season it was determined that the Chargers could only afford to keep one of the defensive ends and went with Luis Castillo. 

2008 was a down year for Olshansky, his tackles were way down and he seemed to be playing in fear of being injured.  Some games he was adequate, but in others he would disappear; when the Chargers played New Orleans he didn't record a single tackle.  He may have suffered some from Merriman's absence as well; Merriman frequently drew the double team that loosened up the rest of the line but with Ware the Cowboy's might see resurgence out of Olshansky.  I don't think he will ever get high sack numbers but should be solid against the run.  He doesn't get great penetration often, but neither is he blown off the line.

As a player he has been just a bit of a loose cannon.  When Bronco center Nalen shot out at his knees on a spike play Olshansky whacked him in the head pulling a personal foul and an earful from Schottenheimer.  He was also prone to providing bulletin board material for other teams; he called the Broncos O-line a bunch of wussies and went out on a limb saying the then 17-0 Patriots needed to be worried about the Chargers, not the other way around.  I actually enjoyed the fire and would like to have seen more of that this season.  Wade Phillips knows exactly what he is getting and the price seems right, the Cowboys might be a good fit for him.

Not a whole lot else going on right now. Nick Eatman has a nice sendoff for RW1. His exit kind of got lost in the T.O. tsunami.

Michael Irvin's reality show has picked the contestants for a shot at training camp with the Cowboys. 

The players are living in the Cotton Bowl locker rooms and training inside the stadium. They have been stripped of their cellphones, iPods, laptops and any other way of communicating with the outside world.

That's all for now. Feel free to add any links to other Cowboys stories or bring up topics for discussion in the comments.

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