Ovie was selected on the 134th overall pick (4th round) of the 2003 NFL Draft. The choice was a compensatory pick. He is the 2nd FB (1st was Steve Lee in the 6th round, 1997), and the 1st Wake Forest player selected in Baltimore’s franchise history. Ovie is one of the biggest fullbacks in the NFL and known for being a power blocker with the ability to pick up the blitz, plus have good hands out of the backfield and shows skills as a special team’s ace.
Ovie received a scholarship from Wake Forest University. He played in 44 career games, starting 33 games playing fullback and tight end in 1-back sets. He carried the ball 137 times for 530 yards and 13 TDs while in college, posting 12TDs as a senior. As a tight-end he had 18 receptions for 164 yards and 14 special teams tackles. He earned 2nd-team All-America honors as well as being an All-Atlantic Coast Conference 1st-team selection as a fullback by the NFL Draft Report, and the top fullback by the USA Today. As a senior at Wake Forest he started every single game and gained a career-high 322 yards on 81 carries with 12 TDs. Only Brian Piccolo (15 in 1964) and Larry Russell (15 in 1971) scored more rushing TDs in a season in school history.
Ovie was ready to go to medical school after graduation when his coach told him NFL scouts were interested in him playing professionally. Scouts quoted Ovie as being a “very athletic, strong, powerful player who has an opportunity to play in the NFL. A devastating blocker in both the running and passing attack who will be the team’s starting fullback and will play tight end in one-back offensive sets; considered one of the best blocking fullbacks in the nation, rated the 14th-best fullback nationally by The Sporting News; Rated as the #1 Fullback by USA Today. Ovie has a very good understanding of the offense and the coaching staff will continually look for ways to get his talents on the field. Ovie met gold standards in the weight room for all eight events at the end of spring workouts, lifting 396 in the front squat, 506 back squat, 330 power clean, 352 hang clean, 335 bench press, 220 standing press, 15 repetitions of clean-n-press with a 72-lb kettlebell and a 31-inch vertical jump.”
As a kid Ovie loved to play sports such as soccer, track and field, tennis and baseball. Although, his parents were not big sports fans, they supported their son’s passion for athletics. Ovie practices each sport with determination; however, he began to excel in football and ultimately began to focus on that sport alone. As a result, Ovie’s hard work on the field led Porter-Gaud HS to a state title (independent school division) in 1996 and state runner-up honors during his senior year (1997). Ovie rushed for 2,167 yards and 29 TDs during his senior campaign as the Cyclones finished with a 10-2 mark under Coach Ricky Tillman. Ovie was named the state player-of-the-year in his classification and was a regional all-star selection in all divisions. He received the honor of being a three-time all-conference and team MVP honoree, gained more than 4,500 yards and scored 69 times during his career. Ovie’s parents were more concerned with his academic performance. He was able to balance his studies with football practice. Ovie served as student body vice-president and was active outside of school as a hospital volunteer and a member of his church choir.
Falcons Head Coach Mike Smith called it “a critical point in the ballgame.” The Falcons were in control late in the fourth quarter. They had the game in their hands and three different plays went against them that went a long way towards spelling a 28-19 loss to the Carolina Panthers at Bank of America Stadium. Continue reading →