Denzel Perryman deserves credit for a monster season, and it begs the question, is he the best Raiders linebacker since Kirk Morrison?
When the Las Vegas Raiders acquired Denzel Perryman in the preseason, it was a move that garnered little attention. Putting the COVID controversies aside, Perryman’s arrival registered as a minor blip on the NFL scales. However, for the Silver and Black, it turned out to be a transaction that came to help define the 2021 season.
A lot of the success this season is attributed to the defense, and Perryman has played a major role in that regard. It’s been such an impressive year that some feel that No. 52 is the best inside linebacker since Kirk Morrison.
Perryman has shined across the board as a tackling machine, not to mention helping to turn around the Raiders’ run defense. When Perryman isn’t on the field, it’s noticeable. For the 2021 season, Perryman has accumulated 154 combined tackles, putting him in the company of Bobby Wagner and Foyesade Oluokun, just outside the top five in the NFL.
Speaking of the league, Perryman is second in stops among linebackers with 60, trailing Roquan Smith, who has 65, per Pro Football Focus.
As far as the Raiders’ history goes, Perryman has made his mark as well. His 154 tackles now overshadow Greg Biekert’s 146 from 1998. As a side note, Perryman accomplished that feat in 15 games, while it took Biekert 16 games. So what about Morrison? Well, most young fans probably don’t remember him, which is egregious when you consider how important he was to the Raiders.