What Allen Robinson brings to Chicago Bears
There are also some questions about how physical he is as a receiver. While he can and does live off of contested catches, most of them are situations where he can out jump or outsmart his opponent. There are some situations where a lack of physical strength comes back to bite him.
Xavier Rhodes, an imposing quarterback and division rival had a great day against Robinson. Plays like the one below set the tone, and the physicality caused a drop. From there, Robinson had just one catch for 17 yards on four targets.
Chris Harris, another strong cornerback was able to get his hands on the ball while Robinson was bringing it in. Lack of separation to keep Harris around combined with the physicality to poke the ball loose resulted in an interception.
Those are elite cornerbacks, but the questions showed throughout the season. If he gives cornerbacks a chance to break on him, he struggles to complete the reception.
He also can be knocked off track by physicality as well. In the play below, an incompletion has to be placed on Robinson as a hip check throws him completely off balance and unaware of the pass coming towards him.
Upside in physicality
While his playing strength can be an issue, the reason drops and separation could be bigger issues are the positives he displays while playing tough football as well.
As shown below, he is able to fight through contract to not only make the catch but also maintain balance and pick up yards after the catch. He is fighting for every last yard. There is no doubt the will to fight is here.
Robinson is still able to get separation despite being held through his route. He is pulled back as the ball comes in but concentrates and hauls in an off-target pass.
Again, Robinson is able to not only fight through contact but create significant separation over the middle of the field. This is another play where yards after the catch ability is hindered by quarterback play.
Lastly, Robinson is able to fight back through the cornerback to get to this pass and haul it in. He fights for the first down after the catch.
Robinson brings strengths as a proficient route runner in movement and understanding. The understanding adds to an underrated player after the catch. He brings a wide catch radius to strong size and body control. The combination erases accuracy and makes uncatchable passes seem in the realm of possibility.
Questions lie firmly in his health first. However, it is fair to note he is still 24 years old the day he signed with no other significant questions aside from his ACL. Physicality is an issue in contested catches, but his body control and catch radius can ease that pain. He lacks getting separation, but his quarterback was certainly a big factor in that, as well as his low completion percentage. However, drops are likely going to be the biggest question mark when seeing if Robinson can enter the tier of elite wide receivers.
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Still, the fact of the matter is that while Mitchell Trubisky has a long way to go in his recognition and processing, there is no denying he is a more accurate quarterback than what Allen Robinson dealt with in 2016.
Robinson can create the quick separation to be effective in quick passing. This can ease the stress on Trubisky and develop a report with his big weapon early. With a more accurate quarterback who can get Robinson passes in stride, there is no doubting his yards after the catch is going to go up. The quick routes and easy connections that can turn into big plays will open up deep passing down the field, where Robinson can truly dominate.
Adding in Trey Burton over the middle, as well as Taylor Gabriel and Tarik Cohen as gadget weapons, this team can develop a variety of ways to expose Allen Robinson against defenses.
The Bear Goggles may be on, but the tape does not lie. Allen Robinson could be a top ten wide receiver in the NFL and it could be a quick as next season.