When the Ravens wrapped up their 17-16 Pro Football Hall of Fame Game win against the Chicago Bears last Thursday night, Breshad Perriman finished tied for second on the team in catches with two and third in yards with 19. But it was the catch he didn’t not make that drew the most attention.
A pass from quarterback Robert Griffin III that went through Perriman’s hands, bounced off rookie cornerback Michael Joseph and was intercepted by free safety DeAndre Houston-Carson ignited a new wave of criticism aimed at the fourth-year pro who has been underwhelming since the organization used its first-round pick on him in the 2015 NFL draft.
If Perriman got wind of the torrent of disapproval, he didn’t say so.
“I don’t care what they see,” he said of his detractors after Tuesday’s second of two joint practices with the Los Angeles Rams at the team’s training facility in Owings Mills. “I don’t know what they see because I’m not interested in what they see, for the most part. If they just see [the interception], then that’s fine. It doesn’t really matter who saw it. I made two more plays after that. I could have made a play and scored, and they still would have focused on the first one. But I can’t focus on that because then I’m really not going to be focused on my overall game. So they can pick and choose what they want to see.”
Despite catching only 10 passes for 77 yards last season and being a healthy scratch in four of the final seven games, the 24-year-old Perriman has been backed by teammates who have continued to believe that he is capable of producing for the offense.
Wide receivers coach Bobby Engram expressed confidence in Perriman on Saturday.
“He just needs to make plays in the game,” he said. “I think Breshad has had an up-and-down career here, but the thing about it [is] he’s staying strong, he’s still competing, and he just needs to go out and make plays.”
It is widely believed that Perriman is fighting for his future with the Ravens, who have 11 other players at the wideout position. Even though the team picked up his $649,485 roster bonus July 19, the move does not guarantee him a spot on the active 53-man roster, and the franchise elected in May to decline the fifth-year 2019 option for just over $9 million.
Perriman is the first to acknowledge that he was disappointed that his drop led to the interception. But he noted that the key for any player is to avoid dwelling on mistakes and to push forward.
“I didn’t really hang my head,” he said. “I just kept the same next-play mentality and was really trying to make a big play. I had the one drop and then two more catches after that, and I just kept grinding. Drops are going to happen. That’s just part of the game. It was a good early lesson for me, and I was proud of myself for the way I let it go and just shrugged it off and just looked for the next play. I didn’t hang my head down. Just got back to my roots and continued to play and focused on the next ball.”