The Chargers keep looking for hard-nosed, physical football players. So I suppose it makes sense to get a guy who scouts and talent evaluators explain like this:
"He's a tackling machine."
"He's going to lay the wood to ball carriers."
Yes, those are direct quotes about ILB Denzel Perryman from Miami (FL), the 2nd round pick of the San Diego Chargers. The Bolts only have three inside linebackers on the roster (Donald Butler, Manti Te'o and Kavell Conner), so they certainly needed depth at the position.
One thing everyone agrees on is: this guy hits, and he hits extremely hard.
“He’s an explosive, extremely instinctive inside linebacker," said Telesco. "He plays with a lot of energy. As far as we’re concerned, and obviously it’s just one team’s opinion, as far as inside linebackers go, he has the best instincts in the draft, the best tackling, and he is the most explosive. When he hits people, they go backwards.”
Perryman is 6'0" tall, weighs 242 pounds and was a finalist for the Butkus Award, which goes to the nation's best linebacker. He should make an immediate impact on special teams while working his way in to the defensive rotation.
“We’re going to find a role for him," said Telesco. "Like I said, he tackles, he’s reliable, an excellent tackler and he turns the ball over on contact. Whether it’s at inside linebacker, special teams or third downs, we’ll find a role for him.”
“Great football intelligence," said Chargers head coach Mike McCoy. "You love the physical style. He is another great linebacker to play at the University of Miami. Every time we turned the film on, it looked like a highlight reel out there."
Perryman was considered a 2nd or 3rd round talent by many, although some say he could be the best tackler in this year's Draft. He did have trouble in pass coverage in college, but Telesco said he's better in that role than most people think.
As for the physical style that the Chargers have fostered (guys they call "hammers"), Perryman is the poster child.
“He’d be number one on the hammer list," said Telesco. "When people see the tape, they’ll see the same thing.”
The Bolts now have three selections remaining in the 2015 NFL Draft, in the 3rd, 5th and 6th rounds, and still need to address the defensive and offensive lines, and wide receiver position.