Is N’Kosi Perry Miami’s Future or Present?

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Is N'Kosi Perry Miami's Future?
File photo. N'Kosi Perry #5 of the Miami Hurricanes runs out of the pocket with the ball against the Florida International Panthers on September 22, 2018 at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida. Miami defeated Florida International 31-17. (Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)

Many watching the Miami Hurricanes game versus Florida International were in for a surprise. After Malik Rosier led Miami to two scoreless drives in the first quarter, there was a quarterback change. Coach Mark Richt made the decision to bring in N’Kosi Perry, for some meaningful playing experience. The redshirt freshman completed 17 passes on 25 attempts and threw for three touchdown passes. Is N’Kosi Perry Miami’s Future? Or is he the present?

As if Rosier didn’t feel pressure as the starter before, the performance against FIU has given momentum to have Perry as the starting quarterback. Now the decision for Richt, will come down to who gives the team a better chance at winning.

Is N’Kosi Perry Miami’s Future? Or Present?

What N’Kosi Perry Brings

Coming out of high school Perry was ranked as the number seven dual threat in the 2017 class, by 247 Sports. Although he has the ability to make plays running the ball, Perry is a field general that looks to spread the ball out first. However, his ability to improvise in the pocket is a trait that adds to his value. Perry also has enough speed to make a defense game plan around that part of his game.

The best attribute of Perry overall, is his arm strength. As a pure passer he has the potential to be one of the best that Richt has coached. Even before his arrival on campus Richt compared Perry to Charlie Ward, who won a Heisman at Florida State.

Potential to Production

With Perry being allowed to play most of the game against FIU, it was a bit of a coming out party for the redshirt freshman. One of the best things that Perry executed Saturday was feeding the playmakers. Part of the reason that Miami came into the season highly ranked, was because of the talent at the skill positions. However, Rosier struggled in that area completing 52% of his passes this season.

For that reason, making Perry the starting quarterback would make sense. Miami already features a good running game and perhaps the most talented receiving group in the conference. All Perry would have to do is give the playmakers a chance, something he has showcased completing 66% of his passes.

Furthermore, Perry already leads the team in passing touchdowns. The offense looks to have more energy with him at quarterback. Freshman tight end Brevin Jordan currently leads the ACC in touchdowns and receptions among his position group. All of his touchdowns have come from passes from Perry.

Now Is The Time

The most obvious point to not name Perry as the starting quarterback is because of experience. Rosier is older, and has been in bigger match-ups against really good competition. In just one season, he was also able to break a school record in touchdowns even after playing through injuries. All of that has to be respected in the decision, but Perry gives the offense it’s best chance at scoring.

With Miami getting ready to open conference play up against North Carolina on Thursday, Richt has to be bold and allow Perry to leave his mark. That is not to say that Perry will not struggle, because he’s thrown interceptions in games already, but he must have the chance to learn from his mistakes. It’s better to gamble on Perry’s potential and progression than just continue with Rosier that has already peaked. Also, Richt can always have the option to go back to Rosier, if Perry does struggle. Another noteworthy tidbit on Miami’s future is the fact that after this season none of the quarterbacks have starting experience. It would benefit the Hurricanes both now and in the future to get Perry that experience immediately.

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