I’m pretty sure you’re already asking to speak to the manager (with your “Karen” haircut) as you read the title… but hear me out.
Breshad Perriman is not the same Draft Bust that we once knew.
However, to see his progression, let’s take a look at the frustration he caused Baltimore Ravens fans, teammates, and coaches that ultimately led to his release.
What Was The Problem Last Time?
On Day 1 of training camp during his rookie year, the omen of bad things to come was immediately seen, when Perriman suffered a knee injury. That injury – which we heard was “nearly healed” for months – caused him to miss the entire 2015 NFL season.
In 2016 he finally got on the field, and though it appeared to be a brighter spot, it wasn’t by much, as he had just 499 yards on 33 receptions. His five drops that season weren’t that significant, but bringing in fewer receptions than RB Terrance West? That’s inexcusable.
With 2017 being another down season for a guy with such potential (just 10 receptions for 77 yards in 11 games) the Ravens brass made it very clear 2018 was a “crap or get off the pot” type of year. Unfortunately, a stacked depth-chart (or what appeared to be), with Michael Crabtree, John Brown, and Willie Snead buried any chance Perriman may have had to shine.
The former UCF player gave it his best effort even in failure. According to BR.com’s Clifton Brown:
Ironically, Perriman had the best training camp and preseason of his career this summer and remained healthy throughout. He led the team in preseason catches (11) and receiving yards (136), along with one touchdown. Perriman thought he had done enough to make the 53-man roster following Thursday’s preseason victory over the Redskins.
Perriman did not make the final roster, then bounced from the Washington Redskins, to the Cleveland Browns (where he scored a touchdown against Baltimore in the 2018 season finale), before finally finding a way to shine with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2019.
Why Reopen That Wound?
It’s no secret this offense runs through the tight ends. It is also common knowledge that outside of Mark Andrews, Marquise Brown is a favorite target of Lamar Jackson. While Miles Boykin is still developing, Perriman could bring an added element to the Baltimore attack.
This is the part where some of you may want to keep scrolling. I might offend you. The main reason I would like to see Perriman back in purple and black is to see if he was not actually the problem.
Yes, I’m talking about your precious Joseph Vincent Flacco!
Pundits and fans alike were so quick to put Perriman’s poor performance solely on the WR, but could the real reason be that his QB had some accuracy issues? Joe only connected with him on 50% of their targets in 2016. In 2017, the two only linked up on 32% of targets. Perriman had nine total drops the entire time he was in Baltimore (2015-2017).
With that low number of drops, where does that leave the rest of those targets? There is a possibility they were on throwaways or due to overall inaccuracy. I am very curious to see what Lamar can do with Perriman at his disposal.
Yes, he had some injury issues, but those appear to be behind him.
How Has He Done Since He Left?
Sure, some of you get PTSD from Perriman’s past, but I have some interesting stats for you from his post-Baltimore time. Here is BP’s 2018 Season, once he found a home in Cleveland around Week 5.
340 Receiving Yards
21.3 Yard/Reception Average
Here is BP’s 2019 season:
645 Receiving Yards
17.9 Yard/Reception Average
1 DROP. 1 FOR THE WHOLE SEASON!
These stats were not even spread over the entire season. The bulk of the numbers came when Jameis Winston lost both of his big targets in Mike Evans and Chris Godwin to injuries. If “I need laser-eye-surgery” Jameis can find Perriman for three TDs in one game, the league MVP should be able to use him as well. Perriman also had three games straight (Weeks 14-17) with over 100 yards and a TD in 2019.
In short, he transformed into the deep-threat that Baltimore envisioned him as when Ozzie Newsome drafted him in 2015.
Can Baltimore Afford Him?
After bringing in a contract for $4M from Tampa Bay, Perriman may look to cash in on his late-year performance, but even so, it should not break the bank. I believe a commitment to him long-term could do the trick. A three-year, $18M deal should be enough to lure the former first-round pick back to Baltimore. However, we all know it’s not a sure thing.
Who Else May Be Interested?
The Seattle Seahawks have two legit weapons and like to seek out fast, flashy names like they are collecting fantasy football players. A
ccording to Alistair Corp of fieldgulls.com:
The idea of Perriman and Seattle is one that makes a lot of sense for both player and team. For the Seahawks, they could use another big-bodied perimeter receiver, and at 6-foot-2 and 215 pounds, Perriman is just that. Perriman uses his size well downfield, hauling in several contested catches in 2019. Paired with DK Metcalf, Perriman would offer Seattle another physical wideout who can get over the top of defenses at any moment.
There are plenty of reasons not to take another crack at the receiver, such as the injury bug and the mob that will probably riot inside M&T Bank Stadium upon his first dropped pass. However, there is evidence to prove he is worth the pickup, such as his Week 14-17 performance with Tampa Bay.
I’m not putting all my eggs in the Perriman basket. It’s just an idea, one that I think deserves more consideration than many Ravens fans are willing to give it.
I hope that if Baltimore cannot sign back the 2015 26th overall pick for a second term, the team finds a player of similar size and speed through the draft.