Samaje Perine explains choosing Broncos over Bengals in free agency
Cincinnati Bengals fans and even the team itself were surprised when running back Samaje Perine elected to leave the team in free agency, signing a deal with the Denver Broncos.
Perine seemed like a slam-dunk of a return for the Bengals after his performances spelling Joe Mixon last year, both in ball-carrying duties and especially in key situations as a pass-blocker.
But Perine, speaking for the first time since signing, explained that Sean Payton’s two-back system and the chance for increased carries swung his decision.
“What it came down to, really, was how up front Denver was with me as far as playing time and what coach Payton wants to do with me, personally, and what he wants to do as an offense,” Perine said, according to Parker Gabriel of The Denver Post on Thursday. “The first time I talked with coach Payton when everything opened up — that first day — the thing he really emphasized was his history of using multiple backs, using two backs in his time with the Saints and going through the history of the backs he’s had.”
On paper, Perine will get to pair with Javonte Williams in an offense directed by Russell Wilson. Historically, Payton has been very consistent with his two-back system.
As for the Bengals, there’s still the unknown fate of Mixon. The Bengals figure to sign a veteran free agent, potentially someone like Ezekiel Eliott, while also drafting the position as early as Round 2.
More Latest News!
Bengals' Zac Taylor comments on Ezekiel Elliott free agency rumors
27 former Bengals players who are still free agents
Bearcats TE Josh Whyle talks potentially joining Bengals via NFL draft