Olsen, who was under contract with the team through 2020, stated he still has "love of football" and did not announce future plans.
Olsen's departure is the latest monumental change for Carolina, which dismissed longtime coach Ron Rivera during the season and replaced him with Matt Rhule. All-Pro linebacker Luke Kuechly surprisingly announced his retirement this offseason and quarterback Cam Newton, the face of the franchise, is entering the final season of his current contract with his future in doubt.
Though the monumental Newton decision -- as to whether he'll stay with Carolina or move on -- remains, Olsen's departure looks to lean toward a significant rebuild for the franchise and would also seem to lean to Newton donning another uniform for the first time in 2020.
Having received stellar reviews for past commentating spots, Olsen would have many suitors in the broadcasting world , but is also said to be interested in playing next season if the right opportunity is there, Rapoport reported.
Through the Panthers' greatest seasons, Olsen was a standard of spectacular consistency, seemingly always finding open space and Newton seemingly always finding him.
The tight end's three Pro Bowls came consecutively from 2014-2016 with Olsen tallying 1,000-plus yards receiving in each of those three campaigns. Since then, Olsen has been riddled by injuries over his previous three campaigns.
For his career, Olsen has 718 catches for 8,444 yards and 59 touchdowns -- 524 of those catches, 6,463 of those yards and 39 of those touchdowns came as a Panther.
A first-round draft pick out of Miami in 2007 with the Bears, Olsen looked outstanding at times, but misused for the majority of his days in Chicago.