Pats Draft Rd.3/96: EDGE Ronnie Perkins

SeoulSoxFan

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NE grabs EDGE defender Ronnie Perkins from Oklahoma, PFF's 43rd overall player:

Per thedraftnetwork.com:
Ronnie Perkins looks like he weighs a lot more than what he's listed at, but he carries it extremely well. He has experience from both the stand-up position and with his hand in the dirt. He has the speed to threaten the near hip of offensive tackles, but flattening and turning the corner can be hit or miss. Possessing very powerful hands, it’s easy to see the effect that they have on matchups as he’s consistently able to jolt them back suddenly after coming into contact with him. His unique power and strength help him to remain clean as a run defender. Snatch-pull and club-rip are two moves that he often likes to use and both have been highly effective for him throughout his career. Continuing to add more to his repertoire will only help him continue his development going forward. Right now, Perkins doesn’t have an apparent counter move that he likes to execute when blockers have an immediate answer to his first plan of attack. When unable to utilize initial moves, he can struggle to find that next move to still have an effect on plays. As a run defender, he can be wildly undisciplined with chasing pulling blockers or with chasing running backs on zone-read plays. When seeing that pullers who originally started on his side are traveling to the other, he immediately chased them, which often left the backside void of contain responsibilities. Playing more disciplined and demonstrating more patience on running plays is needed.
Per SI:
Overall, Perkins may be at his best in a situational pass-rushing role. He can use his pass-rushing upside to generate pressure; this will allow him not to rely on his questionable run instinct and defending ability. He’s not inept as a run defender, but he could use a year to process the nuances of whatever defense drafts him. Developing more of a consistent pass rush plan would benefit Perkins as well.
Per B/R:
POSITIVES
  • Good combination of athleticism and bend, despite his lighter frame.
  • Play recognition is a premium trait, allowing him to beat blocks that he physically should lose more often.
  • In third down situations as a true pass-rusher, he has a quality get-off.
  • Consistent enough as a tackler to play as a 3-4 outside linebacker in the NFL.
  • Has a knack for making plays on stunts and blitzes rather than pure four-man rushes.
  • Very similar to the profile of linebacker-edge defender hybrid Uchenna Nwosu (2018 second-rounder) coming out of USC.
NEGATIVES
  • Size will be an issue in certain situations, such as getting washed down on down blocks.
  • Needs to develop a quality inside counter to his pass-rushing game, as he typically overplays as an outside rusher.
  • Does not transition speed into power as a pass-rusher.
  • Foot speed is good, but not elite, for a player of his size.
View: https://youtu.be/-PFHNIA_dYc
 

j44thor

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Seems like a very similar profile to Uche, not that you can have enough edge rushers these days.
 

Ferm Sheller

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“He’s got a fire and passion to play football,” said Sooners head coach Lincoln Riley. “That’s one of the things we get asked the most is at the end of the day does this guy love football? Ronnie is one of those guys you can unequivocally say loves football. He loves every part of it.”

AND

“What I like,” former NFL head coach Jim Mora Jr. told SI Sooners, “is when he gets to the quarterback, he doesn’t just sack ‘em, he freaking rips through ‘em. You know? And teams value that type of tenacity. That’s what you want.”

From: https://www.si.com/college/oklahoma/football/oklahomas-ronnie-perkins-drafted-by-the-new-england-patriots
 

OurF'ingCity

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This feels like a pretty clear BPA pick where the Pats had him way higher on their board and felt they had to take him regardless of scheme fit or anything like that. Will be interesting to see how they utilize him.

Agree with j44 that they have a plethora of young “EDGE” types now.
 

SeoulSoxFan

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Just how p*ssed off was BB about NE not able to stop the run last year? Just to recap, the new additions on the front-seven through FA:
  • DL Henry Anderson
  • DL Montavius Adams
  • DT Davon Godchaux
  • LB Matt Judon
  • LB Kyle Van Noy
  • LB Raekwon McMillan
  • LB LaRoy Reynolds (ST only)
And the draft (so far):
  • LB Christian Barmore
  • DL Ronnie Perkins
Pats also have the following returning:
  • DL Lawrence Guy
  • DL Carl Davis
  • DL Deatrich Wise Jr.
  • LB Dont'a Hightower
That's a lot of talent added to the Pats D. Perkins can rotate and even start a few games if a starter goes out with an injury.
 
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SeoulSoxFan

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The future Hightower.
He seems more comparable to Jarvis Green:
  • Perkins: 6'3"/247 lbs / 4.69s 20-yard shuttle / 32 7/8" arm length / 32.0 vertical jump
  • Green: 6'3"/285 lbs / 4.25s 20-yard shuttle / 32 7/8" arm length / 31.0 vertical jump
The initial reports I found indicate that he's very coachable and can be an impact player with proper coaching. I'm sure Saban had addressed motor concerns with him as well.

I'm excited about this pick!
 

JM3

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I'm in on this. & not just because I have a soft spot for EDGE players with single digit #s.
 

JM3

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He seems more comparable to Jarvis Green:
  • Perkins: 6'3"/247 lbs / 4.69s 20-yard shuttle / 32 7/8" arm length / 32.0 vertical jump
  • Green: 6'3"/285 lbs / 4.25s 20-yard shuttle / 32 7/8" arm length / 31.0 vertical jump
The initial reports I found indicate that he's very coachable and can be an impact player with proper coaching. I'm sure Saban had addressed motor concerns with him as well.

I'm excited about this pick!
That Jarvis Green shuttle time is impressive.
 

SMU_Sox

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I am not a Ronnie Perkins guy.

Some background: Edge defender is like QB. The NFL is really good at identifying good edge defenders and compared to other positions the odds of getting a starter is abysmal after the first round. 3rd round edge defenders are a particular topic that guys like Arif Hasan, Mike Renner and PFF, and other analytics guys have discussed at length. The odds aren't good. So strike 1.

40734

Edge is one of the few positions where athleticism and production are linked. Aside from being a bad overall athlete Perkins is deficient in two crucial edge rushing athletic traits: burst and agilities. The best edges are all guys who have elite athleticism. Ronnie Perkins is not a good athlete. Strike 2. And it isn't just in his testing. Jon Ledyard specializes in edge analysis and is one of the better writers in the game:

40735

I know PFF, Dane Bruglar, and Daniel Jeremiah like him. I know he is 64th on Arif's board but when you look at the guys who specialize in trench analysis they are not as high on him as others.

Let's look at Lance Zierlein:

40736

Again - tight hipped and average athlete who has a high motor. Lack of traits and functional quickness.

You'd think with all the traits that don't translate to the NFL from college as a hustle-effort pass rusher that he would be good against the run to compensate but he isn't. Guy can't set an edge to save his life:

40737

He's like an unathletic version of Winovich.


40738

The problem is he doesn't have the traits to actually profile as an NFL pass rusher. So what do we have here? An undersized guy who struggles against the run and won't have nearly the same success rushing the passer. Strike 3. Tell me what it is again that you... do here? Yeah... I fucking hate this pick and I ain't afraid to admit it.

Edit: His shuttle, is 4.69. A 253 pound edge with a 4.69 shuttle. His shuttle is almost as bad as his 40. woof.
Edit 2: I originally said you want two traits... but I didn’t phrase that well. You can want an unlimited number of traits. But two important traits to edge rusher is how I should have phrased it.
 
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radsoxfan

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I am not a Ronnie Perkins guy.

Yeah... I fucking hate this pick and I ain't afraid to admit it.

Edit: His shuttle, is 4.69. A 253 pound edge with a 4.69 shuttle. His shuttle is almost as bad as his 40. woof.
You convinced me, and based on his fall it seems like many teams agree with you.

Wonder why so many had him in the people had him in the 40-50 range.

I guess at 96 you aren't as bummed if your expectations come to fruition.
 

Bergs

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I am not a Ronnie Perkins guy.

Some background: Edge defender is like QB. The NFL is really good at identifying good edge defenders and compared to other positions the odds of getting a starter is abysmal after the first round. 3rd round edge defenders are a particular topic that guys like Arif Hasan, Mike Renner and PFF, and other analytics guys have discussed at length. The odds aren't good. So strike 1.

View attachment 40734

Edge is one of the few positions where athleticism and production are linked. Aside from being a bad overall athlete Perkins is deficient in two crucial edge rushing athletic traits: burst and agilities. The best edges are all guys who have elite athleticism. Ronnie Perkins is not a good athlete. Strike 2. And it isn't just in his testing. Jon Ledyard specializes in edge analysis and is one of the better writers in the game:

View attachment 40735

I know PFF, Dane Bruglar, and Daniel Jeremiah like him. I know he is 64th on Arif's board but when you look at the guys who specialize in trench analysis they are not as high on him as others.

Let's look at Lance Zierlein:

View attachment 40736

Again - tight hipped and average athlete who has a high motor. Lack of traits and functional quickness.

You'd think with all the traits that don't translate to the NFL from college as a hustle-effort pass rusher that he would be good against the run to compensate but he isn't. Guy can't set an edge to save his life:

View attachment 40737

He's like an unathletic version of Winovich.


View attachment 40738

The problem is he doesn't have the traits to actually profile as an NFL pass rusher. So what do we have here? An undersized guy who struggles against the run and won't have nearly the same success rushing the passer. Strike 3. Tell me what it is again that you... do here? Yeah... I fucking hate this pick and I ain't afraid to admit it.

Edit: His shuttle, is 4.69. A 253 pound edge with a 4.69 shuttle. His shuttle is almost as bad as his 40. woof.
Edit 2: I originally said you want two traits... but I didn’t phrase that well. You can want an unlimited number of traits. But two important traits to edge rusher is how I should have phrased it.
Just wanted to do a random thank you post for the value you bring here.
 

SeoulSoxFan

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Must say, my enthusiasm has considerably deflated after @SMU_Sox's albeit terrific post.

But as a late-3rd rounder, if he can make the team in year-1 and find ways to improve from there, perhaps a decent backup/spot-starter could be his career in NE.

I'd be fine with that as a cost-controlled DL help.
 

SMU_Sox

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@SeoulSoxFan I think he sees the game and processes it well. He can get over aggressive sometimes because of it. He is also effective in twists and stunts and Oklahoma runs a lot of those games so he should be able to fit in with the Patriots that way. He has some sack production doing that. He has some craftiness to him. Ultimately although he never had more than 6 sacks in a season this was a shortened 2020 and he was on pace for double digits sacks this year. That’s another important predictive mark to hit and at least he was on pace for it. He will give you effort and has the mentality for STs. I like his club-dip-and-rip move. He can convert speed to power and when he gets underneath guys pads he will get sacks that way (see Oklahoma game). Felt like I had to throw in a few positives. He has some things he can do after all.
 

BaseballJones

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To @SMU_Sox - great stuff as always. But here's my question. Mac Jones actually has a slightly faster 40 time than Mahomes, but Mahomes plays much faster in real life. It has always surprised me what Mahomes' actual 40 time is because on the field he looks very very athletic. To me, when I see Perkins' highlights - and again, they're highlights so he's going to look good in them - he looks like he plays much faster in real life than his athletic measurables would suggest. We know that some WRs play much faster than their 40 would indicate, and some WRs play slower than their 40 would indicate. On a bunch of those highlights, he's just absolutely blowing by the tackle (on either side, indicating he can move around).
 

Eddie Jurak

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Bedard noted that he doesn't really fit the usual profile of what the Pats are looking for in an edge rusher and wondered if he is going to be a Hightower understudy.
 

BigSoxFan

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Seems to me like a guy who is getting a de-facto redshirt year. Hopefully the coaching staff can fix some of the fixable deficiencies.
 

AlNipper49

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SMU is like the dude who buys you a lap dance and then slips the dancer a $20 to tell you that her name is your daughter’s name.

Just kidding bud, awesome stuff as always!
 

Ed Hillel

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Watching his highlights he seems stiff but fast, with a high football IQ. I wonder if he ends up off the ball with the Patriots. Probably not, he couldn’t cut with athletic Tight Ends. He moves like his hips are made of cement. It’s weird.
 

SMU_Sox

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Watching his highlights he seems stiff but fast, with a high football IQ. I wonder if he ends up off the ball with the Patriots. Probably not, he couldn’t cut with athletic Tight Ends. He moves like his hips are made of cement. It’s weird.
Yeah I wonder that too because I do like the way that he sees the game like you said. And he’s pretty good in the twist game. And when he’s just slicing through a gap he’s effective. I could see them saying this guy is just a good football player and we’re going to figure out everything else later. I don’t care about athleticism in positions like RB, WR, OG, DT to a certain degree, LB and safety to a certain degree, and even corner I can forgive lack of athleticism in the right system or for the right kind of player. Edge and tight end it’s hard for me to look past that. Same for a guy I think can be a 3 down LB. These are positions that sadly require a lot of athleticism typically for success.
Perkins has a nifty habit of knowing when a guys base is narrow and hitting him then driving him off balance. So he kind of has some of that crafty left handed pitcher to him. A lot of times that skill sets doesn’t amount to anything in the NFL. I’ll be rooting for him because by all accounts he is a high character baller who gives it his all.
 

54thMA

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I know his timed speed scores weren’t elite and I’m not sure how his measurements line up, but his highlights remind me of Jamie Collins.
Jamie Collins; he'll be forever known to me as the guy who got torched by the corpse of Owen Daniels in the 2016 AFCCG.
 

SMU_Sox

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With the way he knows how to slice through LBs and the way he sees the game I think his path to success is a projection of off-ball edge hybrid as some others have brought up. I wish he had even just 1 or 2 off-ball snaps to see how he looked in space because I have some questions on if he is athletic enough to cover RBs and TEs but if his role is attack downhill on early downs and then rush the passer on passing downs I could see a path to success there. It's just a projection.
 

EL Jeffe

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I'm higher on Perkins than SMU but I share some of his concerns. I'll say Perkins, stylistically, is going to remind you of the type of profile Baltimore usually drafts for their hybrid edge guys. Think Judon, Pernell McPhee, or Courtney Upshaw, etc.. Perkins is bit less stout than those guys, but he's very much in that vein of player. He's very physical, violent hands, he's a pain in the ass to play against, and he's relentless for 60 minutes. Not in a Wino hair on fire sort of way, more of a beat you up play after play sort of way. I can't say that it's going to translate as well as Judon or McPhee, because he's in the 250# range. But he's also 21 and should have some more physical projection.

Edges who are limited athletically definitely have a huge disadvantage, so we'll see what becomes of Perkins. I didn't like Jennings last year coming out of Alabama for that reason and I'm hoping with Judon, KVN and now Perkins, Jennings gets shipped off to Houston or something. Perkins has a better motor than Jennings, is more physical, and a little more athletic (Jennings didn't test last year but I'm just basing off of on the field play). Jennings is more instinctive, has the higher football IQ, and a better feel for the game. But I would take Perkins over Jennings all day; what that amounts to remains to be seen.
 

Ale Xander

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Good thing it shouldn't be difficult to get an apprenticeship under Judon!
 

Bowser

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I get the correlation between RAS and pass rush productivity, but it looks like Perkins' RAS (4.73) didn't include his 25 strengths reps, which would bump him up some. He also allegedly tweaked a hammy on his 40.

More importantly, the measurements that largely account for his low RAS -- his height and weight -- are calculated relative to his position group (DE). Make him an OLB and his numbers look a lot better. For example, Perkins is a bit taller and heavier than Micah Parsons, who had these numbers:

Height: 6021, RAS = 7.25
Weight: 246, RAS = 8.64

Besides, some edge rushers with low RAS have found success: Mike Vrabel (6.13), Yannick Ngakoue (5.88), Demarcus Lawrence (5.15), Terrell Suggs (4.76), Greg Hardy (4.67), Tamba Hali (4.13), etc. And hey, Perkins' lack of elite athleticism didn't prevent him from long-arming the shit out of Teven Jenkins. I'm interested to see what he can do.

Edit: Was referencing his unofficial RAS.
 
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Cellar-Door

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I get the correlation between RAS and pass rush productivity, but it looks like Perkins' RAS (4.73) didn't include his 25 strengths reps, which would bump him up some. He also allegedly tweaked a hammy on his 40.

More importantly, the measurements that largely account for his low RAS -- his height (6024; RAS = 2.55) and weight (253; RAS = 2.99) -- are calculated relative to his position group (DE). Make him an OLB and his numbers look a lot better. For example, Perkins is a bit taller and heavier than Micah Parsons, who had these numbers:

Height: 6021, RAS = 7.25
Weight: 246, RAS = 8.64

Some edge rushers with relatively low RAS have found success: Mike Vrabel (6.13), Yannick Ngakoue (5.88), Demarcus Lawrence (5.15), Terrell Suggs (4.76), Greg Hardy (4.67), Tamba Hali (4.13), etc. And Perkins' lack of elite athleticism didn't prevent him from long-arming the shit out of Teven Jenkins.
Kent added the bench on the site:
https://relativeathleticscores.com/ras-information/?PlayerID=18575

Bumps him to a 5.13. I don't think a move to OLB would actually help him that much, because while his size would be good, all his athletic scores would drop.

Basically he'd go from a guy with good speed, okay explosion, poor size and poor agility to a guy with good size, okay speed, low/okay explosion and terrible agility.
 

Bowser

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Kent added the bench on the site:
https://relativeathleticscores.com/ras-information/?PlayerID=18575

Bumps him to a 5.13. I don't think a move to OLB would actually help him that much, because while his size would be good, all his athletic scores would drop.

Basically he'd go from a guy with good speed, okay explosion, poor size and poor agility to a guy with good size, okay speed, low/okay explosion and terrible agility.
Err, yes, I see what you did there. But ... but he long-armed Clark Kent!
 

Shelterdog

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at 250 it’s hard for me to see him in the Simon/Judson/ninko role; i suspect they either of him as some weight or they move him off the line.

He looks more athletic than his numbers suggest; I wonder if anything screwed up his combine prep.
 

BaseballJones

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Some people play a lot faster than their measurables - Jerry Rice was one of those (he could fly on a football field but he only ran a 4.71 40, if you can believe that). And some people play a lot slower than their measurables - N'Keal Harry is one of those (he runs a 4.53 40 but seems a LOT slower than that).

Maybe Perkins is one of the former, not the latter.
 

Deathofthebambino

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Bedard noted that he doesn't really fit the usual profile of what the Pats are looking for in an edge rusher and wondered if he is going to be a Hightower understudy.
That's why I called him a "future Hightower."

I don't see him playing primarily as an edge rusher for the Pats. I think we're going to see him playing in the Hightower role in a 3/4 (at least, I think that's what they hope). He'll come up on the edge when they use 4 down lineman, but for the most part, I think Ronnie Perkins is not playing most of his defensive snaps out of a 3 point stance for the Pats.
 

SMU_Sox

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It's like Zierlein said he needs to prove he can play standing up. I can see a path to success for him - but I don't like betting on his type of outlier. But it's like I said earlier - he is good in the twist and stunt game and sees the field well so he has traits that would work in their system. I get why they like him I just don't know if this is going to work out or not.

I don't know if you all follow the work of Betz on Twitter (now he is @chalkbored) but he is an LB expert. He loves High. I mean he thinks High is the best linebacker of the decade. I feel like saying someone could be the next Hightower is almost disrespectful to how damn good of a player Hightower is. In 2 of his 7 years he made the pro bowl. I am not counting his injury shortened year or his optout. And remember he is having to compete against pass-rushers because the NFL pro bowl voting is stupid. So for a MIKE to get those kinds of votes just tells you even more how special he is. And Hightower played off-ball at Bama. This guy didn't. He had a grand total of 2 off-ball snaps in 2019 and 2020.

I didn't think he looked athletic, I think he just looked frenetic like he plays violently and with a high motor. And being a frenetic player with a high motor is a great thing. He will need to do that to maximize what he brings to the table. With Uche from last year there where reps where he was carrying KJ Hamler down the seam vertically in pass coverage. That is ri-fucking-diculous as Hamler is like a 4.3 guy. Perkins doesn't have that kind of athleticism. A 4.71 40 is good for an edge but for an off-ball LB that's pretty slow. And with his COD and stiff hips you don't really see that profiling to off-coverage ability.

I think his best fit would be to gain 10-15-20 pounds and work as a power edge like Judon. If he can gain weight to hold the edge better 1:1 with his violent hands and savvy play recognition I think it could work. Also, he needs to tone down the aggression when he knows the play because he has abandoned back-side cutoff way too many times when he thinks he has an in and the play goes around him. That can be coached up.

quick edit: in general I don't like grandiose comps and comping an edge guy with no off-ball snaps to Hightower is, respectfully and of course just in my opinion, dubious. It could happen, sure, but It is a really high bar to get to.
 

OnTheBlack

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Kind of reminds me of trey flowers. Not overly athletic but frenetic, physical and a good technician that carries the day. Think that’s maybe his best case scenario?