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2021 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Gabriel Ballinas y Pérez, K/P, Albany State University

Gabriel Ballinas y Pérez Albany State
Gabriel Ballinas y Pérez is one of the best kickers/punters in the 2021 NFL Draft. The Albany State University specialist has a leg.
  • Name: Gabriel Ballinas y Pérez 
  • Height: 5’10”
  • Weight:200
  • Position: K/P
  • College: Albany State University 
  • Twitter: @GaboBallinas

What is the best restaurant in your hometown city? 

• For sea food a restaurant called Cabana is my favorite and for regional dishes El Rey del Cabrito. 

When breaking down your film what will stick out? 

• There are mainly three things that will stick out: a relaxed mindset, resilience, and consistency. 

If you won the lotto, what is the first thing you would do with the money? 

• I would love to contribute to my family’s financial stability, and give back to the community in Albany and in Monterrey that have been supporting my career. And yes, I would love to buy a house, a car and business investments. 

What has been your biggest failure? 

• I have faced a lot of situations where the outcome wasn’t what I expected, but thankfully God has opened other doors in my life that I never imagined which helped me to learn new routs… is that a failure? 

What do your teammates say is your best quality?

• Accountability, on the field I am a guy of few words, but my teammates always know my actions will talk louder than what I can say. 

Who is the hardest working teammate on your team?

• That is a tough one, back in Mexico, college is the final stage of your football dream, but here in Albany State is the beginning. I would say that in my eyes all my teammates work hard to make their dream come true. 

Have you ever had a nickname? What is it?

• Gabo which is short for Gabriel in Mexico. Funny story, when I came to the US people started calling me Gabe but it took me a while to get used to it. 

What is your degree in, if you do not make it as a football player, what is your dream job? 

• Business Management, and more than a job I am thinking of being an entrepreneur, my own boss. 

What is your coolest life moment? 

• That’s another tough one! I think my coolest moment was when I was on the recruiting process, it was crazy because a couple of schools I visited I was only able to see them on TV back in Mexico, so I will always be thankful for being considered by them. I also have a lot of family and friend’s great memories. 

What song would you sing at Karaoke night? 

• Chicken Fried by Zac Brown Band 

If you could pick any actor to play you in a movie, who are you picking? 

• Brad Pitt, he’s an awesome actor, who can play almost whatever you through at him. 

Who is your favorite football team? 

• Dallas Cowboys

Gabriel Ballinas y Perez Cowboys fan
Albany State kicker Gabriel Ballinas y Perez has been a Cowboys fan since he was a youngster

If you had a warning label, what would yours say?

• Warning: Dream Reacher Inside. 

What is your biggest fear? 

• Even tough I’m trying to reach high… I have to go with heights. 

Who is the most underrated player in the NFL? 

• That’s a hard one for me because in México we often just know the names of the superstars as OBJ or Tom Brady, so for me all punters like Johnny Hekker or kickers like Justin Tucker are underrated even though I know they are well recognized in the US. 

Take us through game day, How do you prepare? 

• My game day starts a night earlier when I have a conversation through the phone with my dad, I close my eyes and he makes me first review my kicking technique as if I was actually kicking, then we tells me game situations and I have to tell him, how I felt, how I kicked and if the kick was good or bad, all this to get me already on a game day mindset. After that in the morning I have breakfast with the team and wait for special teams to review the last details to go win! We get to the locker room around 3 hours early and I get stretched out by the trainers and do relaxation exercises while I start listening to Latin music like mariachi or Reggaeton, but I always, always listen to Chicken Fried when I’m about to do my first warm-up kick.Then after warming up and loosing the leg kicking a little bit I go back to the locker room and wait for Coach’s G speech which means time to go win! 

Do you have any hobbies? 

• As a good Mexican… play soccer but I also enjoy a lot playing golf. 

If you had to compare yourself to someone in the NFL, who would that be? 

• I feel a huge responsibility for representing my country, México. In my heart I would love to be able to bring new football fans and new football dreamers. Rolando Cantú, Luis Zendejas, Rafael Septien and Raúl Allegre are just a few names of incredible people that already marked a path to follow. I would compare to them. 

Who has been the biggest influence on your life and explain why?

• My Dad, he has taught me a lot over the years, not only football rules or the love for this sport, but life rules and the love for living it. 

What motivates you to work hard?

• Achieving my dreams, make my family and country proud and being ready to help others. 

NFL Draft Diamonds was created to assist the underdogs playing the sport. We call them diamonds in the rough. My name is Damond Talbot, I have worked extremely hard to help hundreds of small school players over the past several years, and will continue my mission. We have several contributors on this site, and if they contribute their name and contact will be in the piece above. You can email me at nfldraftdiamonds@gmail.com

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