Auburn Tigers defensive end Dee Ford (30) during the fourth quarter of the 2013 SEC Championship game at Georgia Dome. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

Dee Ford adamant that he can play in 3-4, 'sick' of concerns

Auburn Tigers defensive end Dee Ford was the MVP of the Senior Bowl after standing out at workouts and racking up sacks and pressure during the game itself, and there are some who believe he is worth a first-round pick. I could see Ford sneaking into the late first round, because he is an explosive pass rusher who brought speed off the edge with relative ease at Auburn. I have Georgia Tech’s still-underrated Jeremiah Attaochu ranked higher than Ford due to his versatility in coverage (he could be a Cliff Avril-type in the NFL), but Ford is a talented prospect in his own right.

He has been met with a barrage of questions relating to his ability to play for a team that runs the 3-4, and Ford doesn’t sound too pleased with these concerns. I mean, how many prospects aren’t irked when people say that they don’t fit a certain type of defense? Ford told Pro Football Talk when asked about the question he is tired of being asked, “The question that I am being sick of asked. Can I fit in a 3-4 defense?  Yes, I could fit in a 3-4 defense.  I am an athlete that has played defensive end my entire life, that’s just the way it is.”

It sounds like Ford believes he can be a 3-4 DE, but I would rather use him as a 3-4 OLB in that scheme. It’s a tough argument, but I wouldn’t say that he isn’t a fit in the 3-4, especially since I like his upside as a pass rusher as an outside linebacker in that scheme. He’s clearly best off as a 4-3 DE, though, and teams that run that scheme will value him more than teams that employ a three-man front. It isn’t surprising to hear that Ford is tired of that question, but it’s a fully legitimate one for people to have.

Tags: Auburn Tigers Dee Ford Football NFL Draft

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