NFL Hot Press: Personality Issues Hurting Ed Oliver and Chase Winovich

Personality Issues Hurting Ed Oliver and Chase Winovich

Updated April 9, 2019
By Charlie Campbell. Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell.

Starting in the middle of last week, area scouts and national scouts from around the country flew in to their team facilities and draft meetings were started in the final push to have teams finish the pre-draft process. In speaking with sources at multiple teams, personality concerns are hurting two defensive line prospects: Houston defensive tackle Ed Oliver and Michigan defensive end Chase Winovich. Some sources feel that Oliver has a diva personality, while some evaluators have concerns about Winovich’s personality fitting into their locker rooms.

The media gave a lot of praise to Oliver after his pro day workout, and reports were that he ran very fast, but according to some team sources who were at the pro day, they disagree with some of those reports. On top of workout numbers that were not as lofty as reported, sources who were at the pro day said they saw more diva behavior with Oliver in Houston.

“There’s definitely some diva stuff with [Oliver]. The media got ahead of themselves on the pro day love because it wasn’t that good,” said a top evaluator who was at the Houston pro day. “I was right on the line and had him running 4.80 in the 40; that’s what the guys around me had also. He refused to have his arms remeasured, which just reinforces the diva concerns. They pushed him hard in the workout and he kept going and finished it, so I give him credit for that.”

Oliver is still expected to go in the top half of the first round by teams. However, some teams that are more strict on their locker room and what they are willing to deal with say that Oliver may not be in play for that type of team. Hence, some teams in the market for defensive tackle help could go another direction like Clemson’s Christian Wilkins.

Winovich is known to have a strong personality, and teams feel that he seems to relish media attention. His social media presence and relationships with other celebrities have teams wondering how his personality will fit in their locker rooms and how he will mesh with NFL coaches. There are a lot of teams that need to acquire young pass-rushing talent, and following a few productive years at Michigan, Winovich should be in demand in a draft class that does not have good pass-rushing depth for the second day of the draft. However, Winovich’s personality issues are hurting him, and sources from multiple teams that need to get more pass-rushing help are pushing him lower because of the concerns about how he will mesh in their locker room.

From surveying five teams, there was a big range for grades on Winovich. The highest that one team source said was they thought Winovich would go in the No. 50-75 range, which would make him a late second-round or early third-round pick. A few other teams said they graded Winovich in Round 3, and the lowest was one team that had him as a fourth- or fifth-rounder.

Personality issues play a part this time of year because coaches are now heavily involved in the draft process. They’re watching tape on the players and interviewing them on visits. They can elevate or kill a player’s chances of landing with their team by saying they do or don’t want to work with a player, so a diva attitude with Oliver or an overbearing personality with Winovich is causing the danger of having teams pass on those talented defensive linemen.