Take a look through the best shots of Denzel Perryman from his rookie season.
Talent evaluators from all 32 NFL teams are currently in Mobile, Alabama eyeing some of the nation's top prospects at the Senior Bowl.
It was exactly one year ago that Denzel Perryman was one of those highly-touted prospects determined to showcase his talents on a grand scale. A star inside linebacker out of Miami, he was singularly focused on making a name for himself, all the time wondering which team he would be suiting up for in 2015.
"I remember being pulled left and right to talk to so many teams and coaches," he said. "It was crazy. You are always being evaluated in everything you do. I remember going into the first practice, even though we were only in shells, I told myself no matter what, I was going to go out there and standout. I made a couple plays during the run period and blitz period. I think I also did a pretty good job during the 7-on-7 drills. I felt like I shocked a lot of people. They knew heading there that I could play, but they didn't know I could do some of the things I was doing."
Unfortunately, Perryman never go the chance to flash in the game itself as he suffered a minor injury short thereafter. Still, he made quite an impression as team executives and media pundits came away raving about his potential.
The Chargers were one of those teams as President of Football Operations John Spanos recalled seeing the same intensity and demeanor Perryman showed throughout his rookie campaign.
"Denzel didn't make it to the game because he got dinged up in a practice, but we saw in practice a lot of what we saw here. He had a lot of energy, and we had an up close look at him and what he is like in that environment as a player."
While the Bolts took note of Perryman, they played their hand close to the vest to not tip their hand. In fact, he didn't have a clue he was on their radar.
"I had no idea the Chargers were even interested in me," he said. "I never talked to them at the Senior Bowl, so it was crazy. "
Reflecting on his own experience a year ago, Perryman offered advice for those currently walking in his shoes.
"Show what you can do in practice. Don't take it lightly thinking you can just turn it up in the game. The scouts really pay attention to what you are doing in practice. The game is more for the people watching at home and the fans that are there. So my advice is to go all out in practice because that is what they are watching. That is how they see who you are."
Just like he hoped to make a name for himself at the Senior Bowl, Perryman was equally eager to turn heads during his rookie campaign with the Chargers. All it took was one season donning the lightning bolt for the hard-hitting hammer to become a fan favorite. The second round pick finished second on the team with 95 tackles in 14 games with nine starts, which were just five short of becoming the first rookie in team history to total 100 tackles. He also posted nine tackles for loss, two sacks, one forced fumble and three QB hits.
"My life is a lot different than it was last year at this time," he admitted. "I really wanted people to know my name, and get myself out there. I wanted to show people what I can do, and now people know. They want to see those highlight hits again. Personally I accomplished what I wanted to accomplish, but I need to keep pushing from here."