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Alabama NFL Draft Prospects

Where in the NFL Should Dakota Ball Go?

Cedric Mason - Touchdown Alabama Magazine

Position/Size/Weight/40-Time: DL/6-3/268/5.06

Career Stats: 13 Tackles/1.0 TFL/0.5 sacks

Mock Draft Projections: Undrafted Free Agent

Best Fit:

Ball can play as either a defensive lineman or a fullback at the next level but will likely become a mainstay at FB. Though not as versatile as former Alabama captain Jalston Fowler, Ball could still be a useful add. The most difficult job in deciphering a best fit for a fullback-to-be is trying to find teams that still even use fullbacks.

While teams like the Saints (John Kuhn) and Titans (Fowler) do occasionally trot one out, Ball’s best fit in the NFL may surprise most people. Because of his lack of collegiate success, Ball will need to look to join a team with a need of filling a practice squad/depth need. Ideally, Ball will sign with a team that plays against someone that uses fullbacks often. For me, the best fit for Ball is simple:

– Carolina Panthers: Not only do they play teams like the Saints who still occasionally use the old-school fullback, Carolina themselves like to put one on the field every Sunday. Their fullback, Mike Tolbert, is best described as a swiss-army-knife as he can block, create lanes, catch, and even carry the football. For Ball to gain interest from the Panthers, he may need to shed a little weight (though at 6-3 he may not have much to lose), and needs to prove that he can add depth behind Tolbert. Additionally, he needs to be prepared and open to logging time as a practice squad player. At his size, a 5.06 40-yard-dash is nothing to laugh at, but does little in the way of marketability from a fullback stand point. Without top-of-the-line footspeed, he needs to show out with strength. and as a former Alabama defensive lineman it is almost a guarantee he’d be one of the strongest at his position.

Jake Weaver is a contributor for TD Alabama Magazine and Bama Hoops Hype. You can contact him via email at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter for sports news/commentary @JAWeaver0.

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