- Name: Jaren Baltazar
- Position: Defensive Line
- College: Wayland Baptist University
- Height: 6’1
- Weight: 255
- Twitter: @_kingjaren
- Instagram: @kingjaren
What makes you a top prospect at your position in the 2023 NFL Draft?
I possess the versatility and strength to play anywhere across the line in any type of defense (3-4, 4-3, 4-2-5, etc.). I also have the ability to drop in coverage and defend a running back/tight end if need be. My leverage, physicality, and quickness give offensive lineman a tough time.
At what age were you first interested in the sport of football?
Since I was about 10 years old. I was always a big fan of watching football, but I played baseball and basketball. My first snap of football was sophomore year of high school.
What is one thing that NFL teams should know about you?I’m the hardest working person in the room, no matter who is in the room. I am also a football junkie and I love the history of the game. I spend hours in the film room looking for my opponents’ tendencies and weaknesses. I also look at players with similar skill sets that I can model my game after such as John Randall.
If you could donate to one cause in the world, what would it be?
I would have to go with mental health. We all fight different battles every day and as a man, 99% of the time no one cares to hear you vent about it.
What is the best advice you have ever received?
“You’ll never know the outcome until you try your luck”. This taught me to never be afraid to fail because when one door closes, another one opens. You’ll never have any regrets in life if you try things without fear of failure.
Who was your childhood hero?
I was a big fan of Spider-Man growing up.
Who is the most underrated teammate in your locker room at your school?
Definitely Caleb Molina. He is one of my closest friends, but that’s not why I picked him. It’s almost like every time he gets in the game, he gets a sack, or he is forcing the quarterback to throw it away. He deserves a lot more recognition than what he gets.
What is your biggest pet peeve?
When people are rude to waiters/waitresses or other employees in a certain establishment.
Overcoming adversity is what defines character, what was the hardest moment in your life to overcome?
The hardest moment for me was in March 2020. That’s when we got sent home due to the COVID-19 lockdown. We had a fire in the house that caused serious damage and my dog died shortly after that incident. We were living with friends/family members and in different hotels the throughout the summer. Working out was difficult due to COVID restrictions at public gyms and I was working long hours at the local Dominos.
Tell me something about your school and why it is so special to you?
Wayland is special because I am more than just an athlete here. My coaches and professors care about me beyond what I can do on the field. They helped me build a stronger relationship with God and become a better man overall.
What is your favorite snack food?
White Cheddar Cheeze-its.
What is the best part of football?
The physicality and its ability to test your heart.
If you could sell yourself in one sentence what would you say?
I’m a football junkie, I study the game for hours and I look for ways to wreak havoc on offenses by using my quickness to stuff the run and disrupt the quarterback.
If you could compare your play to one player in the NFL who would it be?
I would compare myself to Brandon Graham from the Philadelphia Eagles. We have a similar play style and our impact on the game goes beyond what the stat sheet shows you. Throughout my career, I’ve also heard a few comparisons to Elvis Dumervil and John Randall.
If you could have dinner with three people dead or alive, who would it be and why?
Steve Jobs, LeBron James, and Drake. I would like to pick their brains in terms of becoming successful and hopefully market some business ideas to them. I would also like to see how they deal with problems when they arise.