Bills DT Ed Oliver looking to build off 2019 strong second half

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Buffalo Bills defensive tackle Ed Oliver tackles New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, rear, in the second half of an NFL football game, Saturday, Dec. 21, 2019, in Foxborough, Mass.(AP Photo/Elise Amendola)

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – Bills defensive tackle Ed Oliver looks ready for a breakout season.

“I learned a lot from my first year, basically how they block guys like me. I really learned a lot towards the end of last year so I’m just expecting to start off where I left off last year and if I can do that I’ll be in great shape,” Oliver said on a zoom call with reporters.

The Bills 9th overall pick out of Houston from a year ago had a slow start to his rookie season. He eventually lost the starting job to Jordan Phillips but Oliver picked up his game as the year went on.

He really flashed and showed more of what most expected of him midway through the season. His best game of the year game in his home state against the Cowboys on Thanksgiving.

“It all comes with experience. If I knew what I knew the second half of the season the first half of the season I would have had three or four sacks. But I didn’t know so what you don’t know. I missed some easy layup ones at the beginning of year like if I would have know just keep rushing, just flip your hips right here, just reach I’d have had three or four [sacks],” Oliver explained.

Oliver credits former Bills defensive tackle, Jordan Phillips for helping him progress during his rookie season.

“You have a veteran presence like Jordan Phillips who kind of show you have to do it and you go imitate so having somebody older than you to kind of like guide you a little bit because I was coming from playing the 0 nose to playing the 3 technique so I still had some old, I wouldn’t say bad habits but some habits that were not productive for a 3-technique,” Oliver said.

“Just getting those all out of my system and starting to actually play the position the right way, I mean just that in itself you’re bound to get five or six [sacks].”

Oliver ended his rookie season with 5 sacks, 5 tackles for loss, 8 quarterback hits and 2 forced fumbles. But he also played through injury that required core muscle surgery in the offseason although he never missed time because of it.

The Bills reloaded on the defensive line this offseason bringing in guys like Mario Addison, Vernon Butler and Quinton Jefferson just to name a few.

“They’re great talents, I’m honored to play with them to be honest. Great guys around you everybody rises so I’m just excited to play to be honest. We’ve got great veteran presence,” Oliver said.

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