Broncos fan becomes team member Former, Oakland Raiders tight end Nick Kasa (88) celebrates next to Denver Broncos linebacker Wesley Woodyard (52) after catching a 9-yard touchdown from quarterback Terrelle Pryor during the fourth quarter of an NFL football game in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, Dec. 29, 2013. Kasa is joining the Broncos practice team for the Super Bowl. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar/David Zalubowski, File)
Broncos fan becomes team member
Lexile

In many ways, Nick Kasa has been like any other fan of the Denver Broncos this season.
 
But on Super Bowl Sunday, Feb. 7, he'll be one of the Denver Broncos.
 
Kasa is a tight end who has been out of football since the spring. He got a phone call while sitting in the stands watching the Broncos beat New England in the AFC title game Jan. 24.
 
He dropped his phone and cracked the screen - that's another story - but when he finally restored his service, he learned the Broncos wanted to sign him to the practice squad to help them get ready for the Super Bowl against the Carolina Panthers.
 
"It's been pretty crazy. Kind of indescribable," said Kasa. "These guys have been working hard toward this for a long time. For me to come in at the end here is just kind of an out-of-the-ordinary event. I'm honored to be here and ready to do whatever I can to help."
 
That includes playing the part of Panthers tight end Greg Olsen in practice. Kasa has been studying film of the Pro Bowl tight end to give Denver's top-ranked defense an accurate portrayal.
 
"My role is to be the best Greg Olsen that I can," said Kasa, who went to high school in Broomfield, Colorado, and played at the University of Colorado. "I didn't see this coming. I thought the season was drawing to an end. I was ready to move on to the next year. Surprised me with this call. I'm ready to go."
 
Kasa was drafted in the sixth round by Oakland in 2013, and played in all 16 games his rookie season. The only catch of his career was in the final week of that season, when he hauled in a 9-yard touchdown pass against, fittingly enough, the Broncos.
 
He missed 2014 after being placed on injured reserve with a torn ligament in his knee. Last spring, the Raiders let him go and he's been looking for an NFL job ever since.
 
To stay in shape, Kasa worked out just a few blocks away from Denver's practice facility.
 
"Still pretty much the same start to my day," Kasa cracked.
 
Only now he's making around $6,600 per week on the practice squad and will be going with the team to Santa Clara, California, for the big game. He gets Super Bowl tickets, too, even if he doesn't suit up.
 
"It's a dream come true, for sure," the 25-year-old Kasa said. "I don't know how to describe it. It's just good to be here. I don't want to distract from this team at all. They've been working hard for a long time."
 
And to think, he initially missed a call he's been waiting so long to receive. While attending the AFC championship game, the phone dropped out of his hand and the screen broke. As he was taking in Denver's 20-18 win over Tom Brady and the Patriots, the team was trying to get in touch with him.
 
It wasn't until the next day, when he picked up a new phone, that he saw the messages.
 
His heart sank.
 
"I was freaking out, for sure," Kasa said. "But (I) got it all turned around in enough time and made it over here. Now, I'm just on to however I can help."

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CRITICAL THINKING QUESTION
What did Nick Kasa mean by this: "My role is to be the best Greg Olsen that I can."
Write your answers in the comments section below


COMMENTS (170)
  • dashiellg-3-bar
    2/02/2016 - 07:08 p.m.

    Nick Kasa said "My role is to be the best Greg Olsen that I can." because Greg Olsen is a great tight end for the opposing team, the Carolina Panthers. Also because he wants to make a good first impression on his new team. I thought this article was interesting because out of the blue this kid got a call asking him to play in the Superbowl. I would be stoked if I got a call right now to play in the Superbowl or even got to it.

  • samuelh-3-bar
    2/02/2016 - 07:14 p.m.

    I think Nick Kasa meant by being the best Greg Olsen that he can be is to try and to take his place knowing he isn't as good as Olsen but he will do his very best to try to take his place, and to help contribute to the team.

  • Eric0221-YYCA
    2/02/2016 - 08:32 p.m.

    The Bronco fan might have wanted to be one of the team members of the Broncos because he might have wanted to be in the team of Broncos because he might have wanted to be trying out for the football team Broncos. The football fan might have wanted to try out for the Broncos because the football fan might have wanted to try out on how it is trying out as a football player for the Broncos. The fan might have wanted to try out for the Bronco team because he might have wanted to be in the team because he might have wanted to be trying out for the Bronco team. One of the football fans of the Broncos might have wanted to become one of the football players in the Bronco because he might have wanted to become part of the Bronco football team.
    Critical Thinking Question: What did Nick Kasa mean by this: "My role is to be the best Greg Olsen that I can."
    Answer: Nick Kasa meant that he wanted to be good as Greg Olsen in the football team.

  • william1108-yyca
    2/02/2016 - 08:57 p.m.

    WOW! Super bowl sounds fun and also sounds boring at the same time. But I don't get the point of super bowl. But also by the sounds of it, it hears also like that it is about bowling. I don't know why it is called that. Maybe one other day I will actually watch and admire and enjoy super bowl and foot ball.

  • colek-1-bar
    2/02/2016 - 09:53 p.m.

    This means that Nick Kasa has to mimic Greg Olsen the best as he can so that the Broncos have a chance of beating the Panther's defense. Kasa has to be Greg Olsen's, "accurate portrayal." (paragraph 6). Since 2 years ago's last Super Bowl blowout, the Broncos have wanted badly to win it all. The Broncos hired Nick Kasa to help them use the Panther's offense against themselves. Kasa would imitate Greg Olsen's offenisve strategies and the Broncos would have to defend against him. This way they would get used to Olsen's movements and make him less of a threat. In conclusion, Nick Kasa was hired to mimic Greg Olsen's defensive maneuvers so that the Bronco defense could deal with him easily. I thought this article was very interesting and found the Broncos using another man to mimic Greg Olsen very smart and surprising.

  • travisy1-hor
    2/03/2016 - 09:37 a.m.

    the author's purpose in writing the article is that Nick Kasa is replacing Greg Olsen as a tight end. If you lose a dream in life don't give up because you can get the dream back. If I got that call and I dropped my phone and broke my screen that would be a bad thing if I couldn't return that phone call.

    • alyssat1-hei
      2/03/2016 - 04:01 p.m.

      I think you answered this question really well . It was short and simple.

  • shanej-lam
    2/03/2016 - 10:54 a.m.

    It's very cool that he gets to practice with his favorite NFL team. It is crazy how he went from a fan to a player just like that. I wish that i could be able to do that with my favorite team.

  • emmem-hei
    2/03/2016 - 10:55 a.m.

    What that meant was he wanted to be a good player and the best player.People say that as a catchy frase saying I want to be one of those players.

    • alyssah-hei
      2/03/2016 - 03:39 p.m.

      I agree, this is also what I think he meant by that to. Very well job this was a very good answer amazing job I totally agree.

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