Paul Perkins, RB, UCLA
Jack Del Rio has made no reservations about the Raiders' need to add another back to complement Latavius Murray. They attempted to sign a back in free agency, but wouldn't break the bank to do so and therefore failed to lure anyone to Oakland. The next step is the draft, where there is often good options available in the mid rounds. Perkins is a very good option and the Raiders count themselves lucky he is on the board here.
Here was what I said about Perkins in my Raider Draft Radar piece on running backs:
Outside of Elliott, no back in this draft impresses me more than Perkins. He can put his foot in the ground and change directions with ankle-breaking quickness. He's a one cut and go runner with exceptional speed that he can maintain while weaving his way through defenders. Fantastic downfield vision and instincts makes it appear as if he's always a move ahead of the defender. Add his receiving talents out of the backfield and he looks to be just what the Raiders are looking for in a change-up back.
This 5-10, 208-pound scat back has run for 2,915 yards over the past two seasons averaging 6 yards per carry with a total of 23 touchdowns. He also added 56 catches for 443 yards and 3 touchdowns.
Perkins has shown the ability to make something out of nothing and turn negatives into positives with his instincts and elusiveness. According to Pro Football Focus numbers, he was contacted by a defender behind the line of scrimmage 61 times and he averaged 3.5 yards per carry on those runs, which is among the best in this class. Think how he'd do behind the run blocking expected in Oakland.
As you might expect for a smaller back, he is not a great pass blocker. He isn't considered to be an every down back, but has the potential to grow into that role. In Oakland he would not be asked to be a workhorse. Making him the ideal change of pace back they need.
Raiders selections so far:
Round 1, pick 14 -- Shaq Lawson, DE, Clemson
Round 2, pick 44 -- Mackensie Alexander, CB, Clemson
Round 3, pick 75 -- Paul Perkins, RB, UCLA
Round 4, pick 114
Round 5, pick 143
Round 5, pick 154
Round 6, pick 194
Round 7, pick 234