Indianapolis — Ed Oliver is about to become a very rich man. If the Houston defensive tackle is among the first 10 players selected in April's NFL draft, he'll earn a four-year contract worth north of $18 million guaranteed. The majority of that coming in the form of a signing bonus.
With that kind of wealth, a young man might treat himself to a new car or a new home. But Oliver, he's a country boy from Houston, and the first thing he's eyeing a nice barn for his horses.
Yes, Oliver, the 290-pound crusher of quarterbacks has an affinity for all things equine.
Oliver already owns four horses. He still has his first, Caledonia, but the second, Oreo, might have had a bigger impact on his life.
"I swear that horse tried to kill me a couple times," Oliver said. "But fighting with that horse is really the reason I became fearless and why going up against guys 6-5, 300 pounds is a walk in the park. You fight with a 1,000-pound animal, I'm not worried about 300 pounds."
Who knows where he'll find the time, but Oliver is even considering expanding into livestock as a side business.
"Maybe some cows, you never know," he said. "I've never been a cow guy, but I don't know, they've got bulls that you can sell their semen and make a lot of money like that. For real. Get you a Wagyu bull and make a little money."
There are a million different directions a media session can go at the NFL Combine, but it's safe to say Oliver covered some uncharted territory here. And as interesting as his off-field investment plans might be, the bigger story is where Oliver will end up in the NFL Draft.
Once talked about as a potential No. 1 overall pick, his stock has slipped a bit after a underwhelming 2018 season and questions about his size linger.
Despite the success of shorter, lighter defensive tackles such as Aaron Donald and Geno Atkins, the NFL remains skeptical of the body type, no matter how explosive a player looked in college.
Oliver measured in at 6-foot-2, 287 pounds at the combine, on the heavy side of expectations. And his college resume speaks for itself, with 53 tackles for a loss in three seasons with the Cougars.
Frequently playing nose tackle, Oliver believes his best fit in the NFL will be as a 3-technique, but he's confident he can be a factor in any defensive scheme.. He was even asked to do linebacker drills at the combine and he's intending on taking part.
"I wouldn't be wasting anybody's time playing anywhere in the front seven," Oliver said. "I think I'd be wasting people's time if I was on the bench. I'd be wasting your time and money."