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IDP Rookie Impact Series: Joshua Perry ILB SD

 

Written by Bruce Kimbrough (@fatkat52)

Intro
Joshua Perry was a Four-Star recruit out of high school, and was the Buckeyes first player they recruited in 2012. You can see why. He not only played football, he was All-State in Track and Field (hurdles and long jump) and basketball in high school. As a freshman, he played on special teams and did not start full time. As a sophomore, in 2013, he started 10 out of 14 games and put up  38 Solos, 26 AST, 2 TFL and a 1 SK. In his junior year, 2014, he started 14 out of 15 with 73 Solos, 51 AST, 8.5 TFL, 3.5 SKs, 1 INT, 2 PD and a 1 FF. In that year he had 12 Solos and 6 AST vs Penn State and 3 TFL vs Indiana. In 2015, Perry’s senior year, he had 53 Solos, 52 AST, 7.5 TFL, 3.5 SKs and 4 PD were he had five double-digit tackle games. He was named an all-Big Ten first-team linebacker by the league’s coaches as a senior and honorable mention All-American by SI.com. His play on the field coupled with his deeds off the field earned Perry the honor of being a Lott IMPACT Trophy finalist, selection – one of only 11 from the FBS – to the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team and one of 10 finalists for the Senior CLASS Award. (http://www.ohiostatebuckeyes.com/sports/m-footbl/mtt/joshua_perry_793846.html)

Draft Day:
With the 102nd overall pick of the 2016 NFL Draft, the San Diego Chargers selected ILB Joshua Perry, formerly of the Ohio State Buckeyes. Perry was drafted in his projected draft slot (late 3rd or early 4th round) where the Chargers pulled the trigger with the 4th pick of the 4th round. The Defensive Coordinator, John Pagano, was beefing up the Chargers defense by drafting Joey Bosa DE 1st, Perry ILB 4th and Jatavis Brown OLB 5th round.   When Pagano was asked about adding Perry and Brown he said “You are always trying to create different (packages) in your mind.  Perry is really big and can run, and Brown can really fly around the field.  But at the end of the day they are young players and rookies, and the first thing they have got to do is just learn.  The second thing, and the big thing for any young linebacker, is you have got to contribute on special teams.  A big standpoint for us defensively is to also cover kicks, run down field, block, and tackle.  Adding quality guys like Perry and Brown, I think you also have the ability to step your special teams up to a level that (Special Teams Coach Craig) Aukerman will be fired up with.  “

DRAFT ANALYSIS:

Perry is a well-rounded inside linebacker with tone-setting capabilities vs. the run. He also brings some value as a blitzing weapon if they keep him on the field on 3rd downs. “Although not a major need for the Chargers, Perry adds strong competition to their linebacker unit early.” -Mark Dulgerian NFL Network Research Dept

Measurables: 

At the 2016 NFL Combine Perry ran a 4.68 40-Yard Dash, a 1.64 10-Yard Dash Split; he also bench pressed 225 lbs 20 times.  He posted a 33.5″ Vertical Jump, 124″ Broad Jump, with a 11.64 Agility Score. At his Pro Day  he ran a 7.24 (3) Cone Drill, and put up a 4.43 20-yard shuttle and he has been clocked as low as a 4.48 in the 40-yard dash.

Size–
6’4″, 254 lbs, 33 7/8″ Arm Length, 10 1/4″ Hand Size; He has a frame to add a little more weight and muscle.

Athleticism– 
Perry is a good athlete just not a great one, in another words he will do.

Medical–
In the last three years of Perry’s college career he was pretty much injury free.

Pass Rush
He can rush the the QB, and Ohio State did have him put pressure on the QB. However, I think he will be playing mostly inside not outside despite his 7.5 sacks in college. He did shoot the gaps well and can spot a screen most of the time.

Run Defense–
Perry is a good tackler and only missed nine tackles out of 203 attempts in his last two years of colleges.  He does a great job of filling gaps downhill and does do a great job going side to side. As well as playing and shedding off blockers but does get caught up and missed directed. Also can drop into coverage on the TE.

Tackling–
Tackling is his best attribute were he has the ability to stick and wrap up the ball carrier to finish the play. He takes good angles going after the ball and he can deliver a big hit.

Instincts–
He does well following the ball and know where it will end up on option plays. He also has an eye for keying off players to know where the the ball is going – as in OL, RB’s or QB’s. He is a smart player on and off the field; after all, he was a finalist for  the Lott IMPACT Trophy.

Motor–
Perry has a great motor and does not take plays off. He’s always going to the ball or trying to break up the play.

Veteran Player Impact:
Perry will come in and have to compete for a starting position with Manti Te’o ILB and second year Denzel Perryman ILB. Perryman played outstanding as a Rookie last last and will not give up his job. However, Manti Te’o is another question as has had some problems staying healthy since he came into the league four years ago. He has missed 10 games the last two years.. Now Te’o has seen the writing on the draft wall this off season as the Chargers drafted Perry and Brown. Te’o has since been busting his butt trying to lose weight and get in peak shape to try and stay healthy.  Te’o is certainly a question mark at this point.   We will  just have to see if Perry can step in and close the door on Te’o.

Dynasty/Re-Draft Fantasy Value:
In Dynasty I have Perry my #12 LB in DFW Rookie LB-July Rankings and he is Ranked at #63 in DFW Rookie IDP/OFF Top 75-July Rankings. With the Chargers training camps starting I can see Perry moving up the board fast.

Dynasty ADP:
In DFW Dynasty IDP Rookie ADP Mock Drafts Perry is coming off between 4.09 and 7.03 rounds.

So my take on Joshua Perry ILB SD is, he is a 3-4 inside old school downhill thumper who in as little as 3 to 4 years ago would have been drafted in the first round of the 2016 NFL Draft. However, things are changing in the NFL. Now Linebackers like him and Reggie Ragland are great run stoppers but not a 3 down backer and will probably come off the field in passing downs. With the transformation of Linebackers and Safeties into Hybrids, he would have to play multiple packages to be able to stay on the field for 3 downs. Now I’m not saying that Perry will not find a niche for himself; it could be possible because he can drop back and cover TE’s and RB’s out of the backfield in college. So there is no reason he can not do it in the NFL.  He will just have to work hard. He has always been a hard worker and put in the time. He is as big as DE’s and can play in the box like a Safety.  He’s also an outstanding tackler, which is the base for all #IDP players. Keep an eye on him in training camp and be ready to grab him if he starts getting some first team snaps.

Be sure to check back for my weekly @Fatkat52 DFW #IDP WAIVER WATCH when the NFL season starts and Follow me on Twitter @Fatkat52 Bruce Kimbrough