Ballard Drafted by Vikings

April 30, 2011

Ballard Drafted by the Vikings

IOWA CITY, Iowa — University of Iowa defensive lineman Christian Ballard was selected by Minnesota with the ninth pick of the fourth round of the NFL Draft on Saturday (106th overall).

The 6-foot-5, 297-pounder from Lawrence, Kan., is the 41st Hawkeye drafted during the Kirk Ferentz era.

Ballard was named honorable mention all-Big Ten by coaches and media after compiling 43 tackles (five for a loss) and three sacks for the 8-5 Hawkeyes. He is the second UI player chosen in this year’s draft, following fellow defensive lineman Adrian Clayborn, who was selected by Tampa Bay in the first round Thursday.

The Vikings, members of the NFC North, were 6-10 last season. Ballard has the versatility to play both defensive end and defensive tackle in the Vikings’ 4-3 scheme. He could join the rotation at left defensive end if Ray Edwards leaves via free agency and he could also slide inside to defensive tackle should a need arise there (Kevin Williams suspension).

Ballard joins a Minnesota team that also includes former Hawkeyes Chad Greenway (linebacker) and Albert Young (running back).

With Ballard on the field from 2007-10, the Hawkeyes compiled a record of 34-17 with victories in the Outback, Orange and Insight bowls in three consecutive seasons. Iowa was fifth in scoring defense in 2008 (13 points per game), sixth in rushing defense in 2010 (101.54 yards per game) and 10th in total defense in 2009 (276.54 yards per game). The Hawkeyes finished in the NCAA top 10 six times in various defensive categories since 2008.

During his career, Ballard made 152 tackles with 12 ½ sacks.

2011 NFL Draft
Round 1 Adrian Clayborn Tampa Bay Defensive end
Round 4 Christian Ballard Minnesota Defensive tackle
2010 NFL Draft
Round 1 Bryan Bulaga Green Bay Offensive line
Round 2 Pat Angerer Indianapolis Linebacker
Round 3 Amari Spievey Detroit Defensive back
Round 3 Tony Moeaki Kansas City Tight end
Round 4 A.J. Edds Miami Linebacker
Round 7 Kyle Calloway Buffalo Offensive line
2009 NFL Draft
Round 3 Shonn Greene New York Jets Running back
Round 3 Bradley Fletcher St. Louis Defensive back
Round 4 Seth Olsen Denver Offensive line
Round 6 Brandon Myers Oakland Tight end
2008 NFL Draft
Round 3 Charles Godfrey Carolina Defensive back
Round 4 Kenny Iwebema Arizona Defensive end
Round 6 Mike Humpal Pittsburgh Linebacker
2007 NFL Draft
Round 3 Marshal Yanda Baltimore Offensive line
Round 4 Scott Chandler San Diego Tight end
Round 7 Mike Elgin New England Offensive line
2006 NFL Draft
Round 1 Chad Greenway Minnesota Linebacker
Round 3 Abdul Hodge Green Bay Linebacker
2005 NFL Draft
Round 2 Matt Roth Miami Defensive end
Round 2 Jonathan Babineaux Atlanta Defensive line
Round 4 Sean Considine Philadelphia Defensive back
Round 6 Tony Jackson Seattle Tight end
Round 6 Pete McMahon Oakland Offensive line
2004 NFL Draft
Round 1 Robert Gallery Oakland Offensive line
Round 2 Bob Sanders Indianapolis Defensive back
Round 3 Nate Kaeding San Diego Place kicker
Round 7 Jared Clauss Tennessee Defensive line
Round 7 Erik Jensen St. Louis Tight end
2003 NFL Draft
Round 1 Dallas Clark Indianapolis Tight end
Round 2 Eric Steinbach Cincinnati Offensive line
Round 2 Bruce Nelson Carolina Center
Round 5 Derek Pagel New York Jets Defensive back
Round 5 Ben Sobieski Buffalo Offensive line
2002 NFL Draft
Round 2 Ladell Betts Washington Running back
Round 5 Aaron Kampman Green Bay Defensive line
Round 6 Kahlil Hill Atlanta Wide receiver
2001 NFL Draft
Round 6 Kevin Kasper Denver Wide receiver
2000 NFL Draft
Round 5 Austin Wheatley New Orleans Tight end
Round 6 Matt Bowen St. Louis Defensive back