Before free agency began, you would have called me stupid if I said the New Orleans Saints would target a wide receiver in the first round. However, after trading away Jimmy Graham and Kenny Stills, while also factoring in the decline of Marques Colston, a wideout is a very possible scenario. Central Florida’s Breshad Perriman has shot up draft boards after a phenomenal outing at UCF pro day.
The son of Brett Perriman, who was picked by the Saints in the second round of the 1988 NFL Draft, Breshad possesses a rare combination of size and blazing speed that could help him come in and compete immediately for playing time.
He’s explosive off the snap and has the uncanny ability to separate from defenders for big gains, averaging 20.9 yards per catch in 2014. He’s a big-play threat every time he steps onto the field. Breshad Perriman alongside Brandin Cooks would without question be a dangerous duo with quarterback Drew Brees under center.
His 4.24 and 4.27 second 40-yard dash times at UCF’s pro day would have been good for first overall at the scouting combine, no matter the position.
"TRUE FRESHMAN SEASON (2012):-Earned a spot on the C-USA All-Freshman Team-Among true freshman in UCF history, ranked third all-time with 26 receptions, third with 388 yards and third with three touchdownsSOPHOMORE SEASON (2013):-College Football News All-Sophomore Honorable Mention-Member of the American Athletic Conference All-Academic Team-Led UCF by averaging 20.8 yards per reception-Started 10 of 12 games played, and delivered 39 catches for 811 yards and four touchdowns-Posted three 100-yard games, and had a touchdown catch in three of the last four games of the seasonJUNIOR SEASON (2014):-Named to the All-American Athletic Conference First Team-Earned a spot on Phil Steele’s Postseason All-Conference First Team-Selected as UCF’s Outstanding Wide Receiver at the team banquet-Had a stretch of seven straight games with a touchdown reception from Oct. 18-Dec. 4-Ended the year on a streak of 31 straight games played with a catch-Posted three 100-yard receiving games, including in the final two contests of the year-Became the first UCF receiver with at least 1,000 yards in a season since Mike Sims-Walker in 2006-Racked up 50 receptions with 1,044 yards and nine touchdowns"
Of course, there are a few flaws that could warrant some concern from NFL teams. He’s still a raw route runner, but that can certainly be polished under the proper coaching staff. He can’t rely solely on his speed at the next level — he must improve at reading defenses.
His hands aren’t the best in the world either. According to ESPN draft analyst Todd McShay, Breshad Perriman dropped 14% of his passes last year — something that could haunt him as a professional.
In reality, nobody is perfect. The point of organized team activities, practice, training camp and the preseason is to strengthen your weaknesses. Perriman’s ceiling is high with room for growth to excel at the next level. Don’t be surprised if we hear his name called when the New Orleans Saints are on the clock come draft day.