It’s been a sharp fall from grace for the #2 overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft. The latest in a long list of left tackle busts for the Rams (Alex Barron, Jason Smith and now GRob), Robinson’s entry into the NFL was mismanaged by Head Coach Jeff Fisher who spent his rookie offseason playing him at guard before pushing him into a starting left tackle position midseason. Robinson never fully settled in becoming a fixture among the league leaders in penalties and leaving one of the most important positions in the sport unsecured.
When the Rams hired a new head coach in 2017 in Sean McVay and moved two months later to sign LT Andrew Whitworth in free agency, Robinson’s time was clearly short with the Rams. Last June, it proved time was up when the Rams found a trading partner in the Detroit Lions and moved Robinson for a sixth-round pick. The move was not a successful one as the Lions started Robinson through six games of poor play.
There’s an interesting story to be told here. How did the #2 overall pick, a guy selected before Oakland Raiders EDGE Khalil Mack, before Tampa Bay Buccaneers WR Mike Evans, before New York Giants WR Odell Beckham, Jr., and even before his former teammate in Rams DL Aaron Donald fall so far, so fast? What did the scouting department see that never materialized? How much of his struggle was due to a lack of coaching early in his career?
What really happened?
Perhaps we’ll never know. Perhaps that story is the kind that doesn’t get told and gets buried beneath tomorrow’s transactions and next year’s draft picks. But I wish for everyone’s sake, we understood how this was possible and how it came to be.
Maybe we’ll get a sense of it in Cleveland as Robinson tried to hold on to the NFL.
We wish him the best of luck with the Browns, whatever may come to pass.