Video Diary of an NFL Draft Underdog: Justin Perillo Gets His NFL Shot

By Jason McIntyre

Part I: Diary of an NFL Draft Underdog: Justin Perillo
Part II: Diary of an NFL Draft Underdog, Part II: The Pro Day Awaits

Part III: Diary of an NFL Draft Underdog: Justin Perillo’s Pro Day

Justin Perillo, a tight end who starred at the University of Maine, spent an agonizing few hours Saturday with friends and family at his parents house in Wilmington, Delaware, watching the NFL draft and waiting for The Call. He didn’t sleep well the night before, for obvious reasons. And now, as his family prepared a celebratory party for Saturday night, what would happen if no team was interested in him?

Saturday afternoon, Perillo paced around the split level house, wearing out the carpet in his family room, ducking into rooms and into the backyard trying not to act stressed out. With the TV muted, the room would go silent, and then he’d receive a text and everyone looked at him: Was that your agent? Should you call him? What’s going on? It was a tense few hours, especially from 6:30 pm – 8 pm.

Were the Steelers taking him? What should he say to the Lions when they call him in the 7th round, catching him off guard? The Falcons had two of the final five picks of the draft and were interested in him, but would it be better to get drafted by Atlanta or have his choice of suitors – like the Packers, who reached out to him last week, but not on draft day until the last second – as an undrafted free agent?

I won’t spoil the video.

[Video credit: Greg Presto.]