6-5 297lbs Senior 6-5 297lbs Senior

2011 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Christian Ballard, Iowa


Christian Ballard– DT/DE- Iowa

6-5 297lbs Senior


2007- 15 tackles, 4 tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks

2008- 41 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss, 1 sack, 1 forced fumble

2009- 54 tackles, 5.5 sacks, 9 tackles for loss

2010- 39 tackles, 2 sacks, 4 tackles for loss, 1 forced fumble


Ballard is a quick and athletic defensive lineman.  He has the speed to close the back door and get to the ball carrier.  He possesses good initial quickness to penetrate the pocket and create havoc in the backfield.  His suddenness allows him to slip a block and make a play. He has the type of motor that you look for in a defensive lineman.  Ballard will chase a play to the very end sometimes even ending up 30-40 yards down the field. He does a good job of diagnosing the play and finding the ball carrier.  On the backside he keeps contain while still closing the back door.  He has a good feel for the screen game and is able to quickly recognize the play developing. At 6-5 297lbs Ballard possess a good build for his position.  His build and playing style make him a prime candidate for the 3 technique position.  Ballard has been a very durable player but like most defensive linemen benefits from a rotation. He has a quick first step to penetrate the pocket but his poor snap awareness limits his ability to create pressure.


Ballard doesn’t have great balance due to his high pad level after the snap.  This allows defenders to get into his body and limit his push on the pocket. Ballard has poor snap awareness and is routinely the last guy off the ball.  However, he makes up for this lack of awareness by having a quick first step. Ballard doesn’t drive blockers back but delivers a nice initial jolt.  He is often stood up at the line of scrimmage.


Overall I think Ballard can be a productive pro but it will depend on where he is selected.  From what I have seen I feel that his best fit will be as a 1 gap 3 technique.  His speed and ability to penetrate will allow him to create havoc in the opponents backfield.  He would benefit from refining some of his technique and keeping his pad level low.

Projected Round:

Ballard projects as a 2nd round pick and has the ability to play and contribute during his first year in the league.