2021 NFL Draft: Josh Ball Player Profile

Josh Ball NFL Draft

Josh Ball NFL Draft Overview

Position: Offensive Tackle
Height: 6’7”
Weight: 308 Lbs.
School: Marshall

Pro Day Performance Data

40-yard dash: 5.20 seconds
Vertical jump: 27.5”
Broad jump: 8’10”
225 Lb. Bench Reps: 28

More 2021 NFL Draft Profiles

Josh Ball 2021 NFL Draft Profile

Entering this year’s draft, Josh Ball might be one of the most curious cases to watch develop in the class. Certainly, he has the size and on-field pedigree that appeals to professional clubs. However, major character concerns, both on and off the field, overshadow Ball as a prospect. A four-star recruit out of Stafford High School in Fredericksburg, VA, he initially committed to Florida State. However, the off-the-field issues started right as Ball’s college career began. His former partner filed a restraining order, citing multiple occasions of physical abuse throughout their relationship. Subsequently, Ball was suspended by the Seminoles and departed the program in 2018 for Butler Community College.

In 2019, he landed at Marshall, becoming a fixture on their line. Still, Ball couldn’t keep the distractions at a distance. With the Thundering Herd, he suffered far too many personal fouls and was ejected from his team’s conference championship game. While Ball has the physical tools to be an impressive NFL talent, his maturity is his biggest flaw. In the NFL, teams aren’t willing to overlook these factors with their investments. While Ball might be an earlier round prospect on paper, his history of aggression is quite concerning. He has to prove to teams that he’s willing to work on these issues if he expects to grow in the league. 

Strengths

  • Ideal size and frame to be a professional tackle;
  • Provides a really strong initial punch;
  • Does a good job negating hand fighting from defenders;
  • Shows pretty good balance and core strength;
  • Sets the edge pretty well as a pass blocker;
  • Positions himself well and sets a good center of gravity on the snap.

Weaknesses

  • Dating violence history and character concerns raise major red flags;
  • Over-aggression on the field led to ejections and penalties that hurt his team;
  • Lets defenders get too much push towards the pocket;
  • Doesn’t play with a lot of speed or agility;
  • Hand placement is inconsistent at best;
  • Doesn’t get off the ball with much passion, even with solid technique. 

NFL Comparison: Demar Dotson

Teams With Need at Position: Jacksonville Jaguars, Pittsburgh SteelersGreen Bay PackersTampa Bay BuccaneersMiami DolphinsAtlanta FalconsLos Angeles Chargers

Projection: Fifth Round

Bottom Line on Josh Ball

Certainly possessing all the physical tools to succeed at the next level, it’s the character concerns that matter most for Josh Ball. He’s a relatively good prospect if he can prove to grow as a football player. While he’s not a great athlete, he does show good strength and has a frame that teams will appreciate. For his pro-day performance, Ball earned a 7.80 relative athletic score, which is in the top third for tackles. However, the physical tools aren’t what will keep teams away. In the modern NFL, over-aggression and poor off-the-field history can sink prospects. Josh Ball will need to play a much cleaner brand of football to win over offensive line coaches.

More 2021 NFL Draft Profiles

Main photo:
Embed from Getty Images