The New York Giants do not need to draft a running back highly in the 2020 NFL Draft. The presence of Saquon Barkley means that the Giants will have one of the best running backs in the NFL for at least the next two to three years.
However, that doesn’t mean that running backs should be completely ignored. Barkley missed games due to injury and every player can benefit from being rested every once in a while. The Giants could look to the 2020 NFL Draft for a low-cost option to back Barkley up, or perhaps give them options for multi-back sets on offense. Florida’s Lamical Perine is not only experienced but also very well-rounded and consistent running back. While he might not be a home-run threat, he excels at consistently picking up yardage and keeping the offense on schedule.
Prospect: Lamical Perine, RB, Florida
Games Watched: vs Miami (‘19), vs South Carolina (‘19), vs Auburn (‘19), vs Virginia (‘19)
Red Flags: None
Games Played: 50
Carries (YPC): 493 (5.0)
Receptions (yards/ypc): 72 (674/9.4)
Total Touchdowns (rushing/receiving): 30 (22/8)
Best: Consistency, decisiveness, burst, contact balance, versatility
Worst: Long speed, agility
Projection: Part of an active RB rotation with a varied blocking scheme
Lamical Perine is a solidly-built running back with a compact frame, naturally low center of gravity, and the build to back up a physical running style. He has taken snaps from the shotgun as well as behind center and runs well from both alignments. Perine is a patient runner behind the line of scrimmage, setting up his blockers and waiting for creases to materialize before accelerating. He doesn’t waste much time or motion behind the line of scrimmage, decisively picking his running lanes and following his blockers. Perine shows good short area quickness, with subtle, almost gliding, cuts to change defender’s angles and an above-average burst. He has a wider-than normal stride track and good contact balance, making it difficult for lone defenders to bring Perine down. Perine follows his blocks well and has a good ability to finish his runs and maximize the yardage on any given play.
Perine is a reliable receiving threat from the backfield, executing well as a check-down option as well as a downfield threat on wheel routes and angle routes. He does a good job settling into soft spots in zone coverage as well as picking up yards after the catch. Perine is also a capable pass protector who shows solid assignment discipline and a willingness to block for his teammates.
Perine is only an average athlete outside of a short area. He is capable of creating chunk plays but lacks the long speed to run away from defenses, and can be run down from behind. He also lacks the elite agility and quickness to string moves together and make multiple defenders miss. Perine also needs to bring more of the aggressiveness with which he runs to his pass protection. He is frequently in good position to execute the block but needs to attack defenders.
Overall Grade: 6.2 - Has some traits you can win with but some limiting factors as well. Has the potential to be a starter in the right situation or a good player in a rotation. A good value in the middle rounds. [Grading Scale]
Lamical Perine has the upside to be a starting running back in the NFL, but would be at his best in a running back rotation. He is steady, physical, and well rounded enough to play on any down and distance, but teams would want to pair him with a more explosive athlete. Perine has the ability to run out of a variety of blocking schemes and can play in both man and zone blocking schemes, and shows good instincts and vision running between the tackles.