Ready to be frustrated? Record-setting return man and reserve safety Evan Berry went through offensive drills today in front of NFL scouts, coaches and executives at Tennessee’s pro day. Berry struggled through an injury filled senior season, making little impact and appearing in just two games.
Before that, Berry put together three seasons worth of ebectricrifying kick-off returns, proving to be a real weapon for Butch Jones and company. Considering his reserve status for most of his defensive career, the question was always raised — why didn’t Berry get more run on offense?
To my knowledge, I can only recall one offensive snap for Berry during his time at Tennessee. It was a jet sweep play that went for six yards.
We wrote before the season that Tennessee needed to move Evan Berry to the offensive side of the ball after guys like Alvin Kamara, Josh Dobbs, Jalen Hurd and Josh Malone exited the program. It sounded like that was a possibility, but Berry’s injuries kept us from finding out for sure.
Today, Berry spoke out and said that he wanted to play on offense at the next level. He worked out as a receiver today for evaluators on hand.
Former Tennessee DB Evan Berry worked out at WR today and says he would perfer to play offense at the next level. pic.twitter.com/mEVH1PBN1z— Noah Taylor (@Noah_TaylorDB) March 19, 2018
Evan Berry: “I played offense in high school. It feels natural to me. ... I’m really comfortable with the ball in my hands. Life is too short, I chose to (workout at WR) because that’s where I can play to the best of my abilities.” https://t.co/AD36FWuqpB— Jesse Simonton (@JesseReSimonton) March 19, 2018
We’ll never know what kind of impact Berry could have had on the offense, but it’s frustrating to think about how it wasn’t really even attempted before his senior season.
Will Berry make it in the NFL? I’d guess he gets to stick somewhere because of his return value alone. He averaged over 34 yards per return for his career. That talent will surely stick somewhere at the next level. It’s going to be interesting to see if he can contribute at all as a receiver.