Winnipeg’s Brady Oliveira hoping to realize dream at NFL Draft

He’s put in the hard work and now Winnipeg running back Brady Oliveira is playing the waiting game to see where his football career will take him.

Oliveira is hoping to become the first Winnipeg-born player to get selected in the NFL draft since John Urschel in 2014.

“Now I just want to know, hey, what jersey am I going to put on next season?” Oliveira said. “And what team am I going to be competing for, and trying to win a championship for?”

After a stellar career at Oak Park High School that saw him lead the Raiders to the ANAVETS Bowl championship in 2014, Oliveira joined the University of North Dakota Fighting Hawks on his only scholarship offer. He had a breakout season in his senior year, leading the Hawks in both rushing yards and touchdowns. He didn’t get an invite to the NFL combine, but still impressed enough for 21 NFL teams to show up at UND’s pro day.

“I think I opened up a lot of eyes with my lateral quickness, which I knew, that’s my game,” he said.” I’m never going to be that burner back, but I’m always going to be a quick, shifty back that can make someone miss.”

Oliveira said the Miami Dolphins have already called him, but lately, he’s had a gut feeling that the Minnesota Vikings might be his destiny.

“My dream ever since I was a little kid was to play in the NFL,” Oliveira said.

“I’ve been having some visions lately and dreams of picturing uniforms and stuff. And I’ve been having the same colour. It’s been purple. So I’ll let you guys figure out that one.”

There’s always a chance Oliveira falls through the cracks and will have to pursue an undrafted free agent deal. But he’ll also be available in the upcoming CFL draft, where he is the 18th-ranked player.

“I know that I am the best running back in this draft class,” Oliveira said. “Personally, I think I should go number one overall in the CFL draft. I know the type of competitor I am.”

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