Former NFL Player Michael Oher Interview: 'Blind Side,' Pappy Van Winkle & More


Manage episode 292212694 series 2614517
By Fred Minnick and The Fred Minnick Show. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

On this edition of The Fred Minnick Show, former National Football League player Michael Oher, who also was the subject of the film “The Blind Side,” starring Sandra Bullock, is the guest. The former tackle for the Baltimore Ravens, Tennessee Titans and Carolina Panthers talks with Fred about his playing career, the well-known film, overcoming obstacles, barbecue and more, while also sipping a few select whiskeys, including some Pappy Van Winkle.

Whiskeys tasted:

  • Old Fitzgerald 14 Year 2020 Fall (7:17)
  • Michter’s 10 Year (12:38)
  • Penelope Four Grain Cask Strength (29:13)
  • 291 Colorado Whiskey (36:30)
  • Jefferson’s Rye Finished in Cognac Barrels (43:04)
  • Pappy Van Winkle 20 Year (48:59)


Fred and Michael touch on a variety of subjects, such as:

  • Fred immediately puts Michael on the spot by asking which of his former teammates would be most likely to steal his Pappy Van Winkle. Michael only goes so far as saying it would probably be a defensive lineman.
  • Fred sent Michael six whiskeys. Michael said he isn’t a big drinker but that he thinks socially drinking whiskey is the way to go.
  • Oher says the physical rigors of football mean there wasn’t much alcohol in the locker rooms he was in.
  • He also talks about current Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson and his athleticism and elusiveness. Oher also expresses plenty of respect for former Ravens signal caller Joe Flacco.
  • Oher: “Fans don’t realize they’re the ones making all this go.”
  • The movie “The Blind Side” was preceded by the book “The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game” by Michael Lewis.
  • Michael talks about his plan to open a school for at-risk youths. His hope is to offer the “push” to young people like he got when he could have gone down the wrong path. “You have to give them the benefit of the doubt, give them that chance.”
  • Inevitably, the Popeye’s chicken sandwich enters the conversation. Michael says he hasn’t had one in a while because he’s trying to lose his “covid 25.”
  • Fred compares the 133 proof 291 Colorado Whiskey to a “raunchy” defensive lineman, name dropping the Rams’ Aaron Donald.
  • Michael talks about how his football injuries and other life difficulties set him back at times and that a new book project he is working on is about overcoming obstacles of all kinds. “This will be the best [book] yet for people who can’t get over the hump,” he says, adding, “You can do whatever you put your mind to.” He also says, “You can find all the answers in the mirror.”
  • Fred then shares how he overcame his issues with PTSD after returning home from serving in Iraq.
  • Fred notes that the Jefferson’s Rye finished in cognac barrels is one of his favorite whiskeys of the year.
  • The conversation turns to barbecue. Michael is a brisket guy and says he’s mostly into dry rubs for seasoning the meat. “I want you to taste my hard work,” he says, explaining why he doesn’t sauce up the smoked goods.
  • They taste the Pappy 20 year and Fred admits that he may like it better than his preferred 15 year expression.
  • Fred asks Michael what it felt like to be drafted into the NFL. Michael says, given the difficult road he traveled to get there, “to finally hear my name called, tears of joy just poured down. … I still can’t believe to this very day that I got drafted. I can’t get used to the things it provided to me. … I can’t describe it because I still can’t believe it.”


Oher, on his feelings about the film and the part of his life it depicts: “It’s very inspiring, very motivating. There are so many other Michael Ohers out there that need a way out. … I could have dropped out of school in sixth grade. … I didn’t have anybody to show me the way out, so I had to do it on my own.”


See for privacy information.


1. Old Fitzgerald 14 Year (00:07:17)

2. Michter’s 10 Year (00:12:38)

3. Penelope Four Grain Cask Strength (00:29:13)

4. 291 Colorado Whiskey (00:36:30)

5. Jefferson’s Rye Finished in Cognac Barrels (00:43:04)

6. Pappy Van Winkle 20 Year (00:48:59)

84 episodes