Things have not been going Breshad Perriman’s way since this season has started. Really, not much has gone the way the Baltimore Ravens wide receiver might have drawn it up since he was originally drafted by the team in the first round of the 2015 NFL Draft.
After missing his rookie season with a knee injury, there were initial fears that he might have suffered another season-ending injury in the summer of his second year. But he was able to come back and put up some numbers, with about 500 receiving yards and a few touchdowns.
This year, it’s almost like he hasn’t been out there on the field. And that is partly because of how much time has elapsed this season in which he hasn’t been out there on the field. So that seems to check out.
In fact, the former first-round draft pick was a healthy scratch for the Ravens on Sunday against the Packers. Not for disciplinary reasons, or anything of that nature, but simply because he hasn’t been getting anything done while he has been on the field. Head coach John Harbaugh wanted to try to wake him up, so to speak.
“Yeah, I understand. I do understand”, Perriman said Wednesday about his benching and the reasoning behind it. “I don’t totally agree with it. But I understand why it happened. All I can control is me working hard every week and throughout practice and having it roll over to the game”.
He has just seven receptions so far this season, which has come on 26 targets, meaning that he is barely averaging a catch rate of 25 percent. Entering the last game he played, against the Titans, he had just four receptions on 19 targets, and at that time he had the lowest catch rate in the league. I’m not sure if he still does.
Even worse, those seven receptions have only picked up 54 yards, with zero touchdowns, which is not at all the sort of per-catch efficiency that should be expected of a player of his natural size and athleticism with the draft pedigree that he came into the league with.
About his benching, the wide receiver said that “it’s definitely going to be used as motivation”, which, if it wasn’t, would be pretty damning for him as a player, frankly. “Any time you’re out there, it’s got to be some type of motivation”.
Harbaugh emphasized that he does believe in his third-year receiver in spite of the decision to have him sit for at least this past game. “I do believe he is going to play well”, he said, “and he will be back up just as soon as it makes the most sense for us to win the game, and it could be this week”.
“We have not decided that yet”, he added. Outside of starters Mike Wallace and Jeremy Maclin—both free-agent signings since Perriman was drafted—as the starting wide receivers, the Ravens have been using Michael Campanaro and Chris Moore in a rotation as their third wide receiver.