RICHMOND, Va. - As Redskins rookie Samaje Perine tries to make a name for himself at training camp, fans are learning how to say his name. (It's suh-mah-jay pea-rhine.)
If "Samaje" and "Perine" aren't tough enough, try to pronounce his hometown in Texas: Pflugerville. (It's flu-ger-ville.) So which one causes the most fumbles?
"First and last name would be a tie," Perine said smiling. "And Pflugerville is a little bit behind that."
Maybe folks don't care as much about where he's from, because it's all about where he's going? And Redskins fans hope that's the end zone, as the 236 pound punisher is expected to be a remedy for the Redskins red zone woes. Last season, Washington scored a touchdown only 45.9% of the time it entered the red zone (inside the opponent's 20 yard line).
"He can move the pile, get the tough yards," Gruden said of Perine - selected by the Redskins in the fourth round of 2017's NFL Draft. "That’s important down there because numbers don’t add up. When the quarterback hands the ball to the back, you’re going to be one or two short possibly in the running game. So you need a guy that’s a big back that can burrow through there and get the tough yards."
"It's been extremely fun," Perine said of his first training camp. "But as far as expectations go: I don't have any. I just come in and hope for the best and do what I have to do."
As Perine proves he can pick up yards near the goal line, fans are also gaining ground when it comes to pronouncing his name.
"Everybody I've heard has done a pretty good job of saying it," Perine revealed.