Humphrey, Perkins take spotlight at OU’s Pro Day
It comes with the territory for Ronnie Perkins.
Perhaps the most important part of the lead-up to the NFL Draft beginning April 29 wasn’t the on-field workouts the former OU defensive end went through at Friday’s Pro Day in Norman but the way he handles the questions that have been and will continue to be asked of him, particularly surrounding the suspension that kept him out for six games, including the first five in 2020.
“I really don’t feel like I’ve had to defend my character, really,” Perkins said. “It’s just stuff that comes with making bad decisions, so if you make that bad decision, you’ve got to be prepared for what comes with it.”
Perkins and Rhamondre Stevenson were two of the three Sooners suspended before the Peach Bowl after the 2019 season. The players, according to sources, tested positive for marijuana.
When Perkins returned from the suspension, he had 5.5 sacks and 10.5 tackles for loss in six games.
According to Pro Football Focus, Perkins was the only defensive lineman last season to grade out at 90 or above in both run defense and pass rush.
Perkins tweaked his hamstring during Pro Day and finished with a 4.71 40-yard dash but was able to do position drills later.
“My competitiveness,” Perkins said when asked what the main thing he was sharing with teams. “I play with an edge. I hate to lose. … I love to win but I hate to lose. That’s the biggest thing with me.
“You’ll be getting a competitive guy. I also tell them, you’ll be getting a guy who plays angry every snap.”
Here are four other takeaways from OU’s Pro Day:
Perhaps the biggest surprise of the day was center Creed Humphrey’s performance.
Humphrey had a 9-foot, 4-inch broad jump, a 33-inch vertical, ran a 5.09 40 and had 29 repetitions on the bench press.
“I was excited about it,” Humphrey said. “At Oklahoma, I’m not asked to do a ton athletically. We’re a heavy gap scheme team and I’m blocking back at times. It was good for me to be able to go out there and show my athleticism. I was pretty happy with how I did today. There were a couple of things I could have done a little bit better, but I was pretty happy overall.”
Though Humphrey was strictly a center for the Sooners, he said he can play guard as well.
“I see myself as a versatile guy,” Humphrey said. “I can play any one of the three interior positions. For sure I am comfortable with those.”
Brown flashes speed
Cornerback Tre Brown showed off his speed, running a 4.40 40.
But Brown said he can definitely go faster.
His goal going in was a low 4.3, or even into the 4.2s, Brown said.
“I definitely thought I was going to run fast but I still felt like I ran pretty fast,” Brown said.
Brown, who is listed at 5-foot-10, didn’t play in the Sooners’ Cotton Bowl win over Florida, choosing instead to focus on preparing for the NFL Draft after helping seal OU’s Big 12 Championship Game win with a late interception.
“The fun thing for Tre is he still has a long ways to go,” Riley said. “Still a lot of room to grow with his preparation, with his technique. So you’re not talking about a guy in my opinion that’s tapped out, with his technique.
“I think he is very interesting for a lot of teams and I think he is overcoming his lack of height and length that he has.”
Riley: ‘Can’t wait’ to play Nebraska
Riley also addressed the report Friday that Nebraska had been looking to get out of playing the Sooners.
The programs are scheduled to meet Sept. 18 in Norman, in part to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the “Game of the Century,” which was won by Nebraska.
“We all know the history behind that game,” Riley said. “There’s been a whole lot put into playing it. And we can’t wait to play it here in September.”