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Denzel Perryman avoids bold predictions, lets play do talking

SAN DIEGO – Coming off of an impressive second-half stretch as a first-time starter for the San Diego Chargers, inside linebacker Denzel Perryman would not provide any bulletin-board material for the rest of the AFC West.

Can the Chargers be a top-10 defense in 2016?

“Hey listen, we’re just working hard and playing together,” Perryman said. “We’re building.

“We’ve got a lot of good potential. We’re just building right now, coming together every day and competing.”

Does Perryman have aspirations to make the Pro Bowl in his second season?

“That’s not even a goal yet,” Perryman said. “This is my second year.”

Perryman understands that the Chargers are coming off of a 4-12 season and have a long way to go before they can start making bold predictions on what they will do in 2016.

“We’re out here competing,” Perryman said. “That’s why I ain’t saying nothing. We’re just working.”

The no-nonsense Perryman was unusually reserved when recently talking to reporters, and perhaps that’s a good thing for the Chargers -- a sign of maturity for the 23-year-old former University of Miami standout.

Perryman did nod his head in approval when asked about teammate Brandon Mebane ’s comments that the Chargers have more talent on defense than the Seattle Seahawks.

Perryman also said he looked forward to playing with Mebane on game day.

“During workouts, we’ll talk about that,” Perryman said. “I’m just excited. Mebane’s the defensive tackle in front of me, and he tells me all of the time, ‘No friendly fire.’ And I tell him I got rid of that stuff in high school.

“He just tells me to get to work, and he’s going to keep it clean down there for me.”

Perryman was placed into the starting lineup in the second half of 2015 and immediately made an impact, serving as a tone-setter on defense. Perryman finished with 73 tackles and two sacks.

“I’m just trying to pick up where I left off last season,” Perryman said. “When I first came in last season I was trying to get the playbook down and the terminology. It was a little difficult, but now I know it somewhat like the back of my hand.

“But there’s a bunch of rookies, so I’m just trying to help those guys out like these guys helped me out last year.”