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Old Dominion's Oshane Ximines determined to shed small school and small player tags

Old Dominion's Oshane Ximines in the second half

Old Dominion's Oshane Ximines in the second half against Virginia Tech on Sept. 22, 2018. Photo Credit: AP/Jason Hirschfeld

MOBILE, Ala. – There are small players, there are small-school players, and then there is Old Dominion edge rusher Oshane Ximines, who is both.

But he’s not letting that fluster him at the Senior Bowl this week as he attempts to become the first player from his school drafted into the NFL.

Ximines weighed in at 240 pounds, about 15 pounds lighter than the weight he played at in college and the weight he hopes to reach by the time next football season begins. The reason for it, he said, is an adjustment in his diet. After years of subsisting mostly on Taco Bell – the store in Norfolk apparently knew him by name and usually had his regular order ready and waiting for him when he showed up two to three times a day – he’s begun a more nutritional meal plan. That has resulted in the loss of body fat, which he is only starting to replace with muscle.

“Sometimes you have to break yourself down to build yourself back up,” he said.

On the field it’s made Ximines look tiny at times, and he’s been pushed around a bit in the practices. He’s also flashed with his quickness and athleticism, too.

“I feel like pass rush doesn’t have a shape,” he said. “I was working out with [former NFL defensive end] Chuck Smith last week, and that’s one of the things he said that stuck with me. He said pass-rusher doesn’t have a shape or a size. You can be a 6-7 monster coming off the edge or you can be a 6-2 guy, 240 pounds. The one thing all great pass-rushers have is relentless effort.”

Ximines can change his weight, but he can’t change his school. He said he knows that pass-rushers don’t always come from big-time programs. He pointed specifically to the Giants, who drafted Michael Strahan from Texas Southern and Osi Umenyiora from Troy. More recently, he noted, the Saints took Marcus Davenport from UTSA.

“Those guys give me hope,” Ximines said. “It shows me that the teams are watching the small-school guys and I hope to show them that small-school pass-rushers are good too.”

BRADBURY INTRIGUES GIANTS

The Giants have done a lot of pre-draft work on center Garrett Bradbury out of N.C. State. The 6-3, 300-pounder, who could be there for them early in the second round, has a reputation for nastiness, similar to the attribute that drew the Giants to guard Will Hernandez in the second round of last year’s draft. Bradbury was a defensive lineman early in his college career but converted to offensive line because, he said, he did not want to have to come off the field. Bradbury fondly recalled his practice battles in recent years with current Giants DT B.J. Hill. Bradbury said he has spoken with Hill about the draft process, but not directly about becoming teammates again in New York. “I just want to go somewhere I’m wanted,” Bradbury said.

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