Rookie Spotlight: Lamical Perine, University of Florida
Height: 5’ 10 3/4” (official)
Weight: 216 lbs (official)
Hands: 10 1/4”
Arm: 31 5/8”
40 yard dash: 4.62 (official)
NFL Comparison: Buck Allen, Mike Davis, TJ Yeldon, Josh Jacobs
– big, soft hands
– decisive runner
– patient waiting for blocks
– great ball security
– prototypical size
– good vision
– comps to Josh Jacobs very closely from strictly a physical/testing perspective
– lacks top-end speed
– goes down too easily
– not very elusive
Scouting Notes: Perine is a third down back in an every-down back’s body, much like TJ Yeldon. With a body built to give and take punishment, it’s surprising to see him go down as easily as he often does – His .17 tackles broken per carry rate at Florida was far below average for FBS running backs. He has the bulky frame, but he doesn’t get his hips low enough to really power through tackles with consistency. That being said, there’s a lot to like about Perine. He’s got massive 10 ¼” hands, and perhaps that’s why a player of his size was used so often in the passing game – 40 catches and 5 receiving TDs in 2019. Those huge mitts must help him hold onto the ball as well, as he had only 2 fumbles on 493 career carries.
As a runner, Perine is patient for his blocks, yet decisive. He has excellent vision, and once he makes his choice, he sticks to it and doesn’t dance around. He’s quick through the hole, though he’s not an elusive back. Per PFF, he only forced 31 missed tackles in 2019 which is concerning. He lacks top-level speed and even with quick feet, he’s not very shifty, and I’ve already mentioned how he isn’t one to break many tackles. Perine is a capable blocker, and though he could stand to utilize his power better in this department, he tends to get the job done.
Fantasy Outlook: Perine has NFL “pedigree” – His brother is current Dolphins RB Samaje Perine, but as for good players — he’s related to Myles Jack as well. He also showed generally well at the Senior Bowl in practice and better during the game. And despite running an abysmal 4.62 forty at the Combine, he had a respectable 35” vertical and 22 reps on the bench press, so it wasn’t a total loss. In all, he’s a 50th-percentile SPARQ athlete and decidedly run-of-the-mill. There are better athletes entering the draft for sure, but Perine has proven to be effective, despite lacking elite physical traits. There’s a spot on most NFL rosters for Perine, but it’s just not certain there’s a starting running back role for in his future – If there is, he’s going to have to work his way up through the depth chart. We do like that fact that he could be used on the goal line in addition to the passing game, so Perine is worth a last-round flyer in dynasty, while we wait on his landing spot.
Appeared in 50 games (22 starts) during his collegiate career, finishing with 2,485 rushing yards on 494 carries and 22 touchdowns… Tallied 72 receptions for 674 yards (9.4 avg.), catching eight touchdowns in his career… Ranked ninth in school history in career rushing and receiving yards… Only Gator to post a receiving and rushing touchdown in multiple bowl games. 2019: Appeared and started in all 13 games his senior year with the Gators… Led the team with 676 rushing yards in 132 carries (5.1 avg.) and six touchdowns… A dual-threat back, he also logged 262 receiving yards on 40 catches (6.6 avg.) and five touchdowns… Finished the season tied second among FBS backs with the most receiving touchdowns (5) … His five receiving touchdowns were the most in a season by a Gators back since fullback James Jones achieved that same feat in 1982… One of only two FBS backs in 2019 to finish with at least 40 receptions, 125-plus carries, five rushing and receiving touchdowns, more than 675 rushing yards and 250-plus receiving yards… Closed his career with a career-high 138 rushing yards against Virginia during the 2019 Orange Bowl… 2018: Played in all 13 contests and recorded one start (Missouri)… Led the team with 134 carries, 826 rushing yards and seven touchdowns… Caught 13 passes for 170 yards and a touchdown… Ranked first on the Gators in total yards (996) and second in scoring (48)… Tallied a pair of rushing touchdowns against LSU and South Carolina… Notched 100-yard rushing performances at Vanderbilt (23-121) and Florida State (13-129)… Tallied 22 rushes of more than 10 yards… Bought into Dan Mullen’s philosophy to spilt carries with Jordan Scarlett, which kept them both fresh throughout a game and the entire season… Overall, the Gators ranked fourth in the SEC in yards per carry (5.29) and yards per game (213.15) and totaled 2,771 yards rushing on 526 attempts during the season… That mark passed the 2007 Gators (2,602) for the program’s third-highest rushing yardage total since the start of 1990; only the 2008 Gators (3,326) and 2009 Gators (3,105) had higher totals… Also as a team, UF rushed for 200-plus yards nine times, which tied the 2008 Gators for the highest number of times it hit that mark in a season since the start of 1996… Perine (826) and Scarlett (776) are the first pair of Gators with at least 775 rushing yards in a season since Elijah Williams (858) and Terry Jackson (780) both hit that mark in 1995… Was one of three players (Scarlett, Feleipe Franks) who scored at least five rushing touchdowns, which marked the first time UF accomplished that feat since 2010… 2017: Spent the season as Florida’s most consistent running back and offensive player… Played in all 11 contests and started eight times… Led the team with 136 carries, 562 rushing yards and eight touchdowns… Caught 10 passes for 81 yards and a touchdown… Ranked first on the Gators in total yards (643)… Rushed for 58 yards and three touchdowns on 15 carries against Vanderbilt, marking the first multi-touchdown game of his career… With that performance, he became the first UF running back to score three touchdowns in a game since DeShawn Wynn did so against Kentucky in 2005… One week later, he tallied 12 carries for 70 yards and two touchdowns against LSU… With those back-to-back performances, he was the first UF player to rush for at least two touchdowns in consecutive games since Mike Gillislee did so against Texas A&M and LSU in 2012… His nine total touchdowns rank as the fifth most a UF running back since 1996 (1: Kelvin Taylor – 13, 2015; 2: Ciatrick Fason – 12, 2004; 3: Mike Gillislee – 11, 2012; 4: Earnest Graham – 11, 2002)… Tallied a career-high 20 attempts on the ground against UAB… Recorded a career-high four catches for 30 yards and his first-career receiving touchdown at Missouri… 2016: Played in all 13 games throughout the season… Finished second on the team with 421 yards on 91 carries (4.6 avg) and one touchdown… Caught nine passes for 161 yards and one touchdown… Had a 17.9 average yards per reception, which ranked second on the team… Was the team’s leading rusher against Kentucky (105 yards) and Missouri (106 yards)… Was one of 14 FBS true freshmen to post multiple 100-yard rushing games and one of eight to post both 100-yard games against a Power Five opponent… Became the first UF freshman running back since Jeff Demps in 2008 to have multiple 100-yard rushing games against SEC Opponents… Overall, he became the 16th UF true freshman since 1955 to rush for 100 yards in a game… Scored his first-career touchdown on a 28-yard reception against Kentucky… Recorded his first rushing touchdown against North Texas on a two-yard scamper in the second quarter… Served as a reserve kick returner as he totaled four kickoff returns for 86 yards (21.5 average)… Notched his longest return of the season (41 yards) against Missouri.
Quotable from the Combine
How did Senior Bowl help?
“Being able to talk to all 32 teams during the week, and being able to show off my skills. And being able to be back in my hometown to showcase my talents. It was just an amazing experience. Being able to compete in front of my hometown crowd, and with some of the best seniors across the country, it was just an amazing feeling.”
Happy with how it went?
“Just being able to show what I showed all season, to be able to catch the ball out of the backfield, to be a versatile running back being able to show teams I could win one-on-one battles …
How has this week gone at the combine?
“Amazing. I always watched it on TV, but to be here and be able to talk to teams and be able to show my character. I just want to do my best, and show them I am able to perform in my drills. … I am trying to aim for a 4.4 (in the 40) right now.”
What he can bring to a team?
“A guy who can catch the ball out of the backfield, pass protect, anything. I am a competitor and I feel like that is one of the biggest things they taught me at Florida, just to be able to compete. … A lot of teams pretty much know I can run the ball … so they were also happy to see me catch the ball out of the backfield as well. … You can’t be one-dimensional in this game, I feel like you have to be able to do everything and that is one of my biggest traits. I am not just a one-dimensional guy, I am able to catch the ball out of the backfield and do everything the NFL wants these days. I feel like I can contribute really early.”
Performance in Orange Bowl
“I feel like it boosted a lot of my stock honestly, being able to win Orange Bowl MVP and being able to come out of that game and have three touchdowns and be able to show my receiving talent as well – I had over 100 yards. To be able to showcase my talent in a big game like that …. I never thought about not playing in the (bowl game). That’s just the type of guy I am. I feel like if I am going to start something I am going to finish it, so I wanted to finish with my team.”
Back in the league model game after?
“I grew up liking LaDainian Tomlinson and guys like that. Damien Williams from the Chiefs, I like him. Alvin Kamara, I like him.”
Feels like he is most similar to Chiefs RB Damien Williams
“I feel like he is a very versatile guy out of the backfield and can do a lot of things in the passing game. I feel like that separates a lot of guys. …. I like Ezekiel Elliott as well, a hard-nosed runner. He can catch the ball out of the backfield as well.”
“At Florida I was able to catch the ball out of the backfield, I had like 40 receptions. And over my time there I was able to produce in the passing game. I feel like that helped me over time.”
On Georgia running back D’Andre Swift
“He is a dynamic running back – I take nothing from his game. He is a great guy. When we played against him, you have to always watch out for him. He is a big-time player I feel like.”
Best part of his game?
“Me being able to catch the ball, and my quick decision making at the line of scrimmage, and my vision and work ethic.”
On teams running the ball in the NFL
“I actually spoke with the Ravens and they were like, ‘We had the No.1 run offense in the NFL, so if you want to come somewhere, come to the Ravens. I was like, that’s nice man. I don’t mind that at all. I like to be involved in the passing game as well to show off my full value.