Nick Perry profile

Apr. 26, 2012

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Analysis: Day 1 of 2012 NFL Draft: Rob Demovsky and Pete Dougherty discuss how well Nick Perry will fit as an outside linebacker in the Packers' 3-4 scheme.
Southern California defensive lineman Nick Perry runs a drill at the NFL football scouting combine in February in Indianapolis / File/AP


About Nick Perry, the Packers' first-round choice and 28th pick overall in the 2012 draft:

• Position: Outside linebacker

• School: University of Southern California

• Height, weight: 6-foot-2, 271 pounds

• Highlights: Considered a potential candidate to play outside linebacker in the NFL, most talent evaluators have favorably compared Perry to Chicago Bears standout, Richard Dent. After he posted a 4.58-second clocking in the 40-yard dash at the 2012 NFL Scouting Combine, teams recognized that he might have the most explosive speed for any down lineman that entered the 2012 NFL Draft. … Perry is expected to rival former USC product and Packers outside linebacker Clay Matthews with his outstanding burst, take-off speed, long arms and superb talent. … His ability to disrupt the pocket or track down ball carriers in the backfield allowed him to deliver 21˝ quarterback sacks and 29˝ tackles for loss. …. Why some scouts have also eyed him as a linebacker prospect is his ability to drop back in pass coverage as he plays with the proper pad level, along with textbook-like knee bend. … Perry remained at strong-side defensive end for the 2011 campaign, as the All-American and All-Pac 12 Conference selection was also a finalist for the Ted Hendricks Award, given to the nation’s top defensive end. … The Trojans’ defensive lineman of the year started all 12 games, ranked fifth on the team in tackles (54) and led the league with 9˝ sacks. … He also had 13 tackles for loss, three forced fumbles and one recovery.

• Strengths: Looks chiseled from granite and is a physical specimen (bench-pressed 225 pounds 35 times at the Combine). Explosive athlete – boasts a 38˝-inch vertical leap and broad jump of 10 feet, 4 inches. Features a long, sudden first step and explosive up field burst (see Stanford). Flexible to dip, bend and shave the corner. Very quick-handed. Terrific balance body control. Recorded 10-yard split times (1.51 seconds) faster than several cornerbacks at the Combine.

• Weaknesses: Average length. Plays short-armed and does not leverage the edge. Inconsistent eyes and instincts defending the run. Does not feel blocking pressure. Straight-line mover. Average lateral agility, confirmed in poor 20-yard short-shuttle times (4.66 seconds). Motor too often runs hot and cold.

• Noteworthy: A native of Detroit, Perry was a two-sport athlete who transferred from McKenzie High School to Martin Luther King High School when the school closed after his junior year. He competed at tight end, linebacker and defensive end during his senior season at King. After recording 147 tackles and a state-record 36 sacks in 2007, Perry was named All-American from USA Today, Parade, Super Prep, EA Sports and … On the other side of the ball, he had 14 catches for 310 yards and eight touchdowns as King went 14-0 and won the state title. … Perry redshirted his freshman year at USC before entering the NFL Draft as a junior. … Perry started 22 of 37 games for the Trojans during his career, recording 103 tackles (62 solo) with 21˝ sacks and 29˝ tackles for loss. … The junior became the first Trojan to be the conference’s outright leader in sacks in a season since those statistics were officially recognized in 1984.


“I think I have the raw set skills and the mind to do it. I think I have a lot to bring to the table. There’s a lot of potential that needs to be taken out of me. I’m going to Green Bay for the great tradition that’s going to help me improve my game and make me become a better player for years to come.”

— Nick Perry, Packers first-round draft pick

“We think he certainly has the size and athletic ability that we look for at the position. He tested extremely well at the combine and I think he’s an explosive player. He had a 38-1/2 inch vertical jump and for a guy that size, he obviously has the explosion you look for. He had good production at a high level of competition at USC. It’ll be a little bit of a transition – he’s played with his hand down more than he has standing up – but that’s not uncommon for us in this defense. One of the qualities we look for is guys ability to rush the passer and we think he’s a guy that has the speed to come off the corner.”

— Dom Capers, Packers defensive coordinator

— Weston Hodkiewicz,
— Strengths and weaknesses according to Pro Football Weekly

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