With the rise of the passing game in the NFL, the league has become flooded with talent at the Wide Receiver position. Teams are no longer satisfied with just one star pass-catcher. Now its becoming fashionable to have a stud No. 1, a deep threat No. 2, and even a flashy slot guy.
Last year’s draft was littered with talented receivers, and teams scooped them up early and often, with five total going in the 1st round, two in the top 10, and four in the top 20.
It used to be a well known fact that you had to wait for a Wide Receiver’s third year to see exactly what he was made of, but that trend seems to be broken, as a ton of these guys broke out in their rookie season, and proved to be valuable asset to their teams.
This year’s draft appears to be loaded with that same promise. It wouldn’t be a big surprise if at least three receivers were chosen in the top ten of the first round.
Even though there are quite a few players rated higher, who seem to be a bit more NFL ready, the player I see having the biggest impact on this class is Breshad Perriman.
The NFL used to be a Running Back focused league. Not all that long ago, there were teams who gave up a large portion of their draft to try and secure the best prospect at that position. Quarterbacks were also highly valued as the league started to become more balanced between the rush and the pass. The lucky teams all had a solid receiver, and the great ones had a dominating receiver, but it was very hard to find a team that had two.
The man who changed that was Brett Perriman. Barry Sanders, was the main focus for the Lions back in those days, but it was hard to ignore a receiving core led by Perriman, and Herman Moore.
In 1995 they became the first duo to catch over 100 passes in the same season. They were also the first duo with over 1400 receiving in the same season. Even as theRobin to Moore’s Batman, Perriman finished his career in Detroit ranked 3rd in receptions and yards.
The biggest knocks on his son Breshad, are poor route running, and small hands which lead to a lot of drops. However, besides the outstanding pedigree, the young receiver seems to be blessed with all the things that can’t be taught. He has tremendous size(6’2, 212 lbs), and blazing speed(4.24 40 yard dash), which allowed him to average over 20 yards per reception in college. He also has tremendous leaping ability, and surprising suddeness for a big man which make him a big play threat on every down, and allow him to gain a ton of yards after the catch.
Perriman’s stock has risen greatly in preparation for this year’s draft, and even though his name is being mentioned with the elite, I see him going somewhere in the middle or late first round. Some GM’s are still afraid of his rawness, and inexperience, but I believe that whichever team finally pulls the trigger on him, will find themselves with a big time steal, no matter what number he is drafted at.
Here are a few teams I see as a good match for him:
It appears that Houston will have a young, inexperienced Quarterback behind center, and no better way to take the pressure off of him by giving him a large target with blazing speed. I believe Perriman would be a dynamic compliment to DeAndre Hopkins, and the two could easily spread the field for Arian Foster. I believe he can help make this team become an instant contender.
Since he is already being compared to Josh Gordon, and the Browns have two first round picks, I think Perriman makes a ton of sense here. With the uncertainty of when they will get their suspended Receiver back, they have a huge hole to fill, but the prospect of having them both on the field at the same time in the future, should make any Cleveland fan or QB smile.
If he lasts this long, or if the Eagles haven’t traded up for their coveted Quarterback,I think this would be the perfect match for Perriman. You know Chip Kelly’s offense is going to be explosive, and this guy should be able to fit right into the number one spot. I think it would be a dangerous combo that would have the league talking for years.
If somehow he was paired up with Calvin Johnson this would be a matchup reminiscent of Moore and Perriman, except for the new duo would be way more explosive and have a way better Quarterback. I’ll admit, it doesn’t really make sense with Golden Tate there, but with Calvin Johnson’s history of injuries, it might not be a bad time to start preparing a replacement.
New Orleans Saints
Just like the Browns, the Saints have two picks in the first round of this draft. After losing a couple of big time targets, Drew Brees would be ecstatic to have a talent like this added to his recently depleted stable of receivers. I could see Perriman becoming what Marques Colston was for this team for so many years.
No matter where he lands, I think we will be hearing the name Breshad Perriman for years to come. He may be raw, and still have a few things to learn, but with his talent and pedigree it should all come easily for him. If you ask me, it just seems like he was made for this game.