Biography: Three-year starter who totaled 43/5/3 as a senior after 54/9/5.5 as a junior.
Positives: "Explosive and athletic player with ability at a number of positions on the defensive line. Forceful up the field, quickly changes direction, and can pursue the action from every area. Easily moves about the field, possesses terrific playing speed, and effectively uses his hands to protect himself. Displays good punch and jolt at the point of attack, works his hands throughout the action, and flashes power. Pushes blockers off the line, plays with good knee bend, and forceful up the field. Beats blocks to make plays on the ball despite the extra attention he receives. Rarely off his feet."
Negatives: Does not consistently play with a sense of urgency. Just average first-step quickness. Average upper body strength.
Analysis: Ballard is a terrific defensive lineman and is one of the more underrated players at his position in this draft. He possesses the explosiveness and size to be used as a traditional defensive tackle or line up as a two-gap end in a 3-4 alignment. Ballard possesses enormous upside and has the potential to be a productive starter in the NFL if he puts the pieces together and continues to improve his game.
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