Multiple teams passed on deploying Denzel Perryman in 2021. The Chargers opted not to re-sign the veteran linebacker, and the Panthers traded him just months after adding him as a free agent. Perryman found his footing again with the Raiders.
Playing a career-high 863 defensive snaps, the former second-round pick turned in his most productive season in his first Las Vegas campaign. The Raiders are changing defensive schemes again, replacing longtime Perryman coordinator Gus Bradley with Patrick Graham. But they are interested in another Perryman contract, according to ESPN.com’s Jeremy Fowler (on Twitter). The sides have discussed a new deal.
Tied to the two-year, $6.1MM contract he signed with the Panthers, the 29-year-old linebacker is set to make just $1.1MM in base salary this season. By virtue of their designating Carl Nassib and two-year linebacker starter Cory Littleton as post-June 1 cuts, the Raiders have come into some money. Their $22.5MM in available funds currently ranks third in the NFL.
Perryman made 154 tackles last season, topping his previous career-high total (set during his rookie season in 2015) by a cool 81. The Bolts re-signed Perryman in 2019, giving him a two-year deal worth $12MM. But he mostly worked in a part-time role during that contract. Injuries played a part in Perryman’s stock slipping as a Charger, but he played a career-high 15 games last season. Pro Football Focus did not view Perryman as one of last season’s better linebackers, but the veteran second-level defender earned a Pro Bowl bid as an alternate.
The Raiders added Jayon Brown, Kenny Young and Micah Kiser at inside linebacker this offseason, largely dismantling their 2021 setup outside of Perryman. The team cut Littleton and Nick Kwiatkoski and did not re-sign K.J. Wright. Perryman played for Bradley for the past five seasons, with the veteran coordinator moving from Los Angeles to Vegas last year.
The Dave Ziegler–Josh McDaniels regime has not been shy about extensions for holdover players, however. The new Vegas power brokers have authorized extensions for Renfrow, Maxx Crosby and Derek Carr this offseason. Darren Waller may be on the docket, too, with Fowler indicating the Pro Bowl tight end is a priority as well. Waller will certainly cost far more to extend than Perryman.