The Baltimore Ravens are expecting a big year from wide receiver Breshad Perriman, and the former first-round pick has been turning heads with his play through the first week of organized team activities.
“I think he’s going to surprise a lot of people,” fellow wide receiver Mike Wallace said following Thursday’s practice, via the Ravens’ team website. “He’s going to be one of the top receivers in the league this year.”
Perriman, 23, is entering his third season in Baltimore but missed his entire rookie year due to injury. The 6-foot-2, 215-pound receiver finished fourth on the team in receiving yards (499) and scored three touchdowns in 2016, and feels his connection with franchise quarterback Joe Flacco has only improved this offseason.
“I feel like (our chemistry) has improved tremendously,” Perriman said. “Of course, it can always be better, but right now we feel like we’re in a great place.”
The Ravens are counting on Perriman to play up to his first-round selection in 2017, as they elected not to sign a receiver through free agency or add one to their roster in the draft.
Ravens veteran receiver Steve Smith Sr. announced his retirement following the 2016 regular season, and Baltimore’s 2015 breakout wide receiver Kamar Aiken signed with the Indianapolis Colts in free agency.
Baltimore’s front office and coaching staff’s belief in Perriman likely led to the franchise’s focus on the defensive side of the ball this offseason, and the team is surely hoping he can carry his strong offseason play into the 2017 regular season.
“He beat Jimmy (Smith) one time, and I asked Jimmy about it and he said, ‘Hey man, I think I would have pulled my hamstring if I had chased him right there.’ Breshad eats up a lot of ground and he is running routes very well and he is catching the ball very well,” Ravens head coach John Harbaugh said.
“I think Breshad has had a really good three days. He has had a really good five weeks. He looks very healthy; he looks very fast.”