28

January

Nick Perry 2013 Green Bay Packers Evaluation and Report Card

1) Introduction: When Perry was selected in the first round of the 2012 NFL Draft, he was expected to take some pressure off of Clay Matthews as far as generating a pass rush.   Unfortunately, a wrist injury derailed his rookie season and found himself on injured reserve in early November.   Expectations were high once again for Perry entering his sophomore season, but once again injuries were the name of the game.  Perry missed significant time for the second consecutive season, raising questions about his long-term viability with the Packers

2) Profile: Nick Perry

  • Age: 23
  • Born: 04/12/1990 in Detroit, MI
  • Height: 6’3″
  • Weight: 265
  • College: USC
  • Rookie Year: 2012
  • NFL Experience: 2 years
  • Career Stats and more

3) Expectations coming into the season: Finally healthy again, Perry was expected to rebound and build on some early season successes as a rookie.  His bone jarring hit on Colts quarterback Andrew Luck in 2012 had Packers fans salivating at what he could potentially become.  He showed decent ability in coverage, but Green Bay took him for his speed and pass rushing ability.  A higher sack total was in order for Perry along with continuing to adjust to playing as a 3-4 linebacker after playing as a 4-3 defensive end at USC.

4) Player’s highlights/low-lights: The biggest highlight for Perry was his two-sack performance at home against the Detroit Lions in Week 5.   He had only two sacks for his entire rookie campaign and his two sacks of Matthew Stafford in that game gave Green Bay the edge and got the team’s record back to .500 after some early season struggles.  His low-light was that he once again battled injuries, this time with a broken foot.  Perry missed five games this year and is becoming yet another injury concern for a team that every season seems to face multiple critical injuries.

5) Player’s contribution to the overall team success: Perry was part of a linebacker unit that failed to meet expectations this year, mainly due to injuries.  Perry’s injury didn’t help but it was really Clay Matthews’ twice broken thumb that really doomed the unit.  Perry hasn’t yet truly emerged as the Robin to Matthews’ Batman, but he showed progress in the 11 games he played this year.

6) Player’s contributions in the playoffs: Perry played well against the 49ers, as the defense did as a whole.  He had one sack and five combined tackles, four of which were solo.  Colin Kaepernick still ran wild at times against the defense and that, along with early struggles by the offense, is what doomed the Packers in that game.

Season Report Card:

(C) Level of expectations met during the season

(B-) Contributions to team’s overall success.

(B) Contributions to team during the playoffs

Overall Grade: C+

——————

Kris Burke is a sports writer covering the Green Bay Packers for AllGreenBayPackers.com and WTMJ in Milwaukee. He is a member of the Pro Football Writers of America (PFWA) and his work has been linked to by sites such as National Football Post and CBSSports.com. Follow @KrisLBurke

——————

21 Responses to “Nick Perry 2013 Green Bay Packers Evaluation and Report Card”

  1. Bobby D says:

    I wish we would just draft, or God forbid, sign a stud OLB instead of continually trying to convert someone to something totally foreign to them (especially considering the D coaches we’ve got) Perry’s on record coming out of USC he preferred DE and turns out he was probably right. We’ll never know unless we switch to a 4-3 or he leaves and becomes a Cliff Avril type player.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 8 Thumb down 4

    • Archie says:

      All good points Bobby. I’m, not a big fan of position conversions in the 1st round. However, I will say Perry seems to have been snake bit with two weird broken bones (foot/wrist) and I’m willing to give him one more year to pan out. He has given flashes. And a 3 year conversion from DE to OLB is the norm. I’m just not sure he has enough fast twitch to play in space. He may always play like a tweener.

      The 4 man front – Perry & Jones at SE and Neal & Daniels on the inside. Would make sense but as we all know, DC does not adjust to his personnel, they must adjust to his system. The real question is why after 5 years of drafting for the 3-4, does our GM have nothing but DL who fit a 4 man front? It started with Raji. It’s as though the ass clown never got the memo. In Ted We Trust – God Help US!

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 6 Thumb down 10

    • Hank Scorpio says:

      For NFL teams that run a 3-4, that’s sort of the impossible task. Not many colleges run a 3-4. The ones that do use guys that are fine for college but undersized for the pros. So NFL 3-4 teams are sort of stuck trying to guess how a guy would handle the conversion.

      With more and more NFL teams playing a 3-4 these days, the competition for those players is getting bigger. That drives up the price, both on the FA market and in the draft.

      Yet another reason I wish the Packers would switch back to a 3-4. In fact, there is only one good reason to stick with a 3-4 I can see. Clay Matthews is probably better suited to playing it. But I think we’ve seen he is not enough to make a 3-4 effective all by his lonesome.

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

      • Hank Scorpio says:

        Err, I mean the Packers should switch back to a 4-3

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

      • Dobber says:

        A couple things…
        Absolutely right: more teams playing 3-4 means it puts a premium on players who are cut from the 3-4 mold. This is why Raji will get his money…if not from the Packers, from someone else: he’s got a 3-4 NT build, draft status (top 10 pick), youth (relatively speaking) and athleticism. There will be a trickle-down, though. We’re starting to see colleges switch to the 3-4, and that should only grow as coaches cross-fertilize from the pro ranks.

        My fear is that almost none of the current Packer players have played pro ball in a 4-3 system. I worry that it would set the Packers D even further back, and as many are quick to point out that the shelf life of ARod is limited, this would make it harder to capitalize on his most productive years.

        BUT…since most teams don’t play many snaps out of their base defenses anymore, I see the “what’s your base defense” argument as being superfluous. Really, if we consider the base defense to be the set you play the most snaps from, most teams would be playing a base nickel.

        The other thing is that I don’t see the personnel as needing a major overhaul. I think adding one or maybe two players(and they don’t need to be stars), namely a S and a quality ILB or DL, could make a huge difference in this defense. I’ve started to become enamored with Donte Whitner as a potential addition…

        Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

        • Hank Scorpio says:

          The Packers need a Safety, first and foremost, no matter what they run. Base 3-4, Base 4-3, nickel, dime, whatever. It will make a world of difference if they are not trying to cover up MD Jennings.

          And really, until they are not trying to cover up that second Safety spot, it won’t much matter what else they have or do. It will always be a weak spot that really good offenses will find and exploit.

          As for the Packers, in particular, playing a de facto base nickel…I think that is yet another symptom of the horrible Safety spot. There are times Capers goes nickel against personnel that other teams would use their base to counter. The most rational explanation I can see is that Capers knows one of his Safeties is a liability in coverage so he needs an extra CB. I suppose you could apply that same line of thinking to the horrible coverage of their ILBs. Upgrade those two spots with good, solid NFL starters that can handle coverage responsibilities of their position and I think they would be a lot closer to a base 3-4.

          As for the learning curve of a possible switch, they won a SB in their 2nd year of the switch to 3-4. They won it as much on their defense as their offense. So I think that is a non-factor.

          Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 4 Thumb down 3

  2. David says:

    I think that’s believed to be one of the bonuses of the 3-4, that those tweeners have a place that’s appropriate for them.

    Being opposed to developing OLB’s is the same as being opposed to the draft and develope philosophy. Let’s be clear, THAT seems to be what your opposing.

    To be clear, are you advocating changing the underlying philosophy of our defense to best make use of Nick Perry?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

    • Hank Scorpio says:

      It’s not just Nick Perry that would be better off in a 4-3. Mike Neal, too. Probably most of the DL, as well.

      The Packers simply do not have the required quality at LB to thrive with 4 of them on the field at once.

      Clay Matthews is the only guy on the roster that I think would be worse off for the switch. Matthews’ effectiveness is a pretty big deal, for sure. But the evidence is conclusive that he can’t make a 3-4 go all by himself. And I doubt he’d be ineffective as a LB in any scheme.

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

      • Newhaven says:

        CMIII cannot make our defense any better than it is. He cannot stay on the field for 3/4 of a season!

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

        • Dobber says:

          I have a hard time faulting CMIII for breaking his thumb.

          If he trains in such a way that predisposes him toward hammies, then that can and should be looked into, but don’t fault a player for missing time due to contact injuries.

          Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

      • Nick Perry says:

        Neal, Perry, Worthy, Daniels, even Datone could be better in a 4-3. Matthews I could be great anywhere they play him. Would his sack numbers go down? Of course, but the Packers could actually field a pretty decent 4-3 defense and still have the same damn problem, Linebackers. Or lack of LB. Obviously the Packers are playing a 3-4 this year. Matthews and Perry need to stay healthy, bottom line. If Perry stays healthy and plays even close to the way he did against the Lions and Baltimore in the beginning of the year (3 sacks 2 FF), he’d be a All-Pro.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      • Nick Perry says:

        Neal, Perry, Worthy, Daniels, even Datone could be better in a 4-3. Matthews I could be great anywhere they play him. Would his sack numbers go down? Of course, but the Packers could actually field a pretty decent 4-3 defense and still have the same damn problem, Linebackers. Or lack of LB. Obviously the Packers are playing a 3-4 this year. Matthews and Perry need to stay healthy, bottom line. If Perry stays healthy and plays even close to the way he did against the Lions and Baltimore in the beginning of the year (3 sacks 2 FF), he’d be a All-Pro.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  3. Tarynfor12 Tarynfor12 says:

    Though you gave him a C+ overall grade..Nick Perry doesn’t deserve a B grade for any of the three qualifiers.He’s a grade C at best to date and two sacks against the drowning and muted roar of the Lions isn’t enough to raise the optimism to that level.

    Most know I’m not on his bandwagon but still hold hope for something of real benefit from him but lets be real..Perry is far from being the real deal needed for the Packers at OLB…on either side.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 4 Thumb down 3

    • Razer says:

      Totally agree. Like you, I am still waiting. Perry has tools, I just don’t know if we’ll be able to use them or if he’ll stay on the field long enough to gel with the defense.

      Playing with his foot injury says a lot about the guy. I am hopeful that he can stay healthy next year and we get some more pieces to work around these young guys.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

      • Savage57 says:

        Keep him in on the right side and let Clay go back to the left where he shined his first two seasons.

        So it is written, so it shall be done.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

        • Razer says:

          Ha, ha – make it so!

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

        • Stroh says:

          I’ve been an advocate of switching Matthews and Perry for quite awile. Perry just rushes much better from ROLB than he does LOLB. And the ONE season Matthews played LOLB in ’10 he still had 13.5 sacks, to date his best sack output of his career. Matthews has shown he can excel on either side, Perry however seems like a guy that is one sided. He doesn’t have the ability to turn the corner at LOLB like he does on the right.

          It would be getting much better production from Perry and judging by his success in ’10 wouldn’t affect Matthews at all.

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

      • Lou says:

        I grew up in Green Bay and have been attending practices (and games) since the mid-1960′s and Perry is the best overall athlete drafted #1 I have seen since James Lofton. If he is not a difference maker (provided he stays healthy) no matter what defense he plays in the organization has failed.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  4. Jay says:

    I think that the grades for Perry are fair. He has the athletic ability to be the robin to Clay. Health has been the main problem of the OLB platoon, the lack of depth has killed us. I think there is a playmaker in this draft out of ND named Tuitt. he reminds me of a JJ Watt and can rush inside and out. Back to my main point, if we can get some more push from out down lineman other then Daniels, i think this defense can return to form. Getting heyward will help in the back end. I hope Jones can make a second year jump that alot of players make because he has the ability.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  5. Since '61 says:

    First, I will comment on Perry since he is the subject of this article. Due to his injuries he probably has about 1 season of experience after 2 complete NFL seasons. Hopefully he will stay healthy in 2014 and we will be able to legitimately evaluate Perry. I believe that Perry can develop into a steady OLB but I am not expecting him to evolve into Dave Robinson. On the other hand if he can’t stay on the field we may need to look for another answer sooner rather than later. As for the conversation about 3-4 or 4-3 I agree that none of the teams really stay in any base defense and almost every down is a situational defense at this point. Regardless, the Packers need 2 safeties, 2 ILBs and some DLs for this defense to improve in either 3-4, 4-3 or nickel. Thanks, Since ’61

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

Leave a Reply