Perine was in a unique situation in Oklahoma; he split touches with Joe Mixon, one of the most dynamic backs in the 2017 class. He played the compact, inside runner and saw some goal line work, but it’s difficult to tell whether he was limited to this role because of talent around him or his own ability.
Perine carries his mass low to the ground, giving him an advantage when it comes to balance and drive. It’s especially visible in short yardage and goal line situations; it makes standing him up at the line very difficult. Perine runs with physicality up the middle and will run through contact with a solid stiff arm. He has very good burst to and through the hole, and also possesses surprising speed, getting to the edge and shifting gears.
Although Perine’s touches in the receiving were sparse, he did flash ability as an adequate route runner/target out of the backfield. He has surprisingly smooth hands for a back of his size, and pass blocks well.
Perine’s 2016 tape was stunted by Mixon’s presence in the backfield. He seemed to be pressing in the opportunities he got, often missing obvious cuts to try to break a homerun. Even on short yardage carries, Perine failed to find the yardage blocked, opting to try to cut back and break a long run. He occasionally missed a block, and seemed hesitant to break to the outside.
Perine has a lot of traits that I like, but he didn’t show them in the volume I would have liked. I’m confident that he can be a role player in an offense with an established pass catcher. If Perine tests well, (particularly as a receiver,) he could have some decent upside.