Augustana University Grad CJ Ham Gets New Role With Minnesota Vikings
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Augustana University grad CJ Ham is getting a position change with the Minnesota Vikings for the 2017 season. The team (and Ham) announced earlier this week that Ham is officially making the move from running back to fullback.
This move was expedited after the Vikings decided not to re-sign fullback Zach Line during this years off-season.
In 2016, Ham went undrafted during the National Football League draft. The Minnesota Vikings invited him to their rookie mini camp and then again to training camp in late July.
Ham accumulated 140-yards rushing during last years pre-season, which included two rushing touchdowns.
After preseason, Ham was released during the final roster cuts. He then cleared waivers and the Vikings signed him to their practice squad.
He moved his way up to the active roster for the final two games of the 2016 regular season.
The 2017 Vikings roster is already running back heavy, despite the departure of future Hall of Famer Adrian Peterson.
So far in the off-season the Vikings have signed Latavius Murray (Oakland Raiders) and drafted Dalvin Cook (Florida State) to help with the depth at the running back position.
In an interview on Monday with KWSN Sports in Sioux Falls, Ham said he’s known about the possibility of moving to fullback for a while.
“I’ve known since the beginning of the off-season program that I was coming into this off-season potentially learning more about the fullback position,” explained Ham. “I’m still working out at running back, and I still [have] to know both positions, but they told me that fullback was definitely a position that they could see me playing.”
Ham mentioned when he was signed last year, the team had already discussed the possibility of him being a fullback in the NFL. Now that the decision is starting to lean that way, Ham said he’s working on adjusting his game to fit that role.
“The game is so much faster [than college], and now playing fullback and having to block all of these different defenders and go through different holes, it’s going to be a little different,” said Ham. “The flow of the game is different from that position, and I’m just excited to learn.”
Ham also had a brief twitter conversation with Minnesota Vikings radio announcer Paul Allen about the change in position.
Baby girls first couple steps, she is getting so big! pic.twitter.com/ZMDoBdy00p— CJ Ham (@cjham28) May 7, 2017
@PAOnTheMic She is growing to fast! But thanks man, just getting the hang of this Fullback stuff— CJ Ham (@cjham28) May 7, 2017
There’s still a lot that can happen between now and Week 1 of the NFL season, but it sounds like Ham is going to make the most of his new opportunity in the league.