Auburn's Dee Ford, the first-round draft pick of the Kansas City Chiefs, appears a little undersized for an outside linebacker in the 3-4 system. Ford is slightly over 6-foot-2 and weighed in at the scouting combine in February at 252 pounds. That's smaller than either of Kansas City's two starting outside linebackers, Tamba Hali (6-3, 275) and Justin Houston (6-3, 258).
That obviously didn't bother the Chiefs.
“I’m not sure how much weight he really needs to add,'' coach Andy Reid said. "I think he’s pretty good just the way he is. Normally you see these guys, especially in those positions, over the first two or three years, put on about 10 pounds. I’m not necessarily saying he needs to do that . . . 252 pounds, that’s a pretty healthy outside linebacker. He’s good against the run and the pass.
"The thing that I think is one of his strengths is the way he uses his arms and his hands. He sets those nice and tight. He’s got a great stab move, which is important for a pass rusher. He needs to transfer it over to this level, as all the rookies do. He’s got work ahead of him to do that.''
Ford missed much of the 2011 season at Auburn after having back surgery. He missed two games early last season with a sprained knee but the Chiefs were also confident in his medicals.
“We checked with [trainer Rick Burkholder] and our docs and they felt good about it,'' Reid said. "He had a pretty good season this past year, so we feel pretty good about that.”