Bracing for a tightly-contested competition in the backfield, New York Jets RB La’Mical Perine is enjoying being slept on.
After their selection of North Carolina running back Michael Carter with the 107th overall pick in the 2021 NFL draft, the New York Jets have a very crowded running back room that features five viable competitors, at least one of which has to be the odd man out come cut-down day.
Josh Adams and Ty Johnson will return after showing promise with very limited sample sizes of opportunities near the end of the 2020 season. Seventh-year veteran Tevin Coleman followed Mike LaFleur over from San Francisco and signed a one-year contract.
The elephant in the room is La’Mical Perine, who was selected by Joe Douglas with the 120th overall pick in the fourth round of last year’s draft. With the additions of Carter and Coleman, coupled with the hot 2020 finishes by Adams and Johnson, many have begun to speculate whether Perine’s roster spot is in jeopardy.
Seemingly responding to the debates about his job security that were circulating around Twitter on Tuesday morning, Perine’s latest tweet appears to suggest that he is embracing his role as the slept-on underdog.
Lol I love when they 😴on the kid …
— La’Mical Perine (@LP_deucedeuce) May 4, 2021
Perine is coming off of a somewhat disappointing rookie season. He was stashed behind Frank Gore throughout much of the year, getting only 64 carries over 10 games.
However, he produced little with the opportunities he did get, averaging only 3.6 yards per carry, which ranked 64th out of 76 running backs with at least 50 carries. Johnson (4.7 yards per carry) and Adams (5.4 yards per carry) were inserted into the lineup late in the season and ran the ball much more efficiently.
The running back competition is going to be one of the fiercest battles at Jets training camp, and Perine clearly appears ready to take it on with a massive chip on his shoulder.