Christian Ballard, Iowa, 6-4¼, 288 – Fourth-year senior…Three-year starter who made starts in his final 39 games…In that span, he had 137 tackles, 17.5 tackles for a loss and 10 sacks…Very good speed…Versatile and can play both DT or DE…Has a good swim move that consistently gets him in between double-teams…Holds his ground well at the point of attack…Has good lateral speed and makes plays outside the hashes…Has a variety of pass-rush moves…Uses his hands well and has a strong hand punch…Has never been a sack producer – had just 12.5 sacks in 49 career games…Inconsistent intensity and doesn't always appear to give the same effort on every play…Not a top wrap-up tackler and will allow players to get away too often when he should have them stopped…Gets his legs cut out from under him too often when on the move…Didn't lift at the Combine, but ran a position-best 4.75 40 with a 31½-inch vertical jump and a 9-3 broad jump.
PROJECTION: Showed steady improvement in his three years as a starter to solidify his spot in the draft, but it's unlikely he will come off the board prior to the start of the second round.
John Holler has been writing about the Vikings for more than a decade for Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Viking Update web site or magazine, click here.
Christian Ballard predraft analysis
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