The wide receiver position for the Vikings was greatly improved over this last season, even if we did not get to see a lot of it due to poor Quarterback play. The addition of FA Greg Jennings and Rookie Cordarrelle Patterson were definitely some of the few bright spots from this dismal season. But with Jerome Simpson hitting free agency and Greg Childs being somewhat of an enigma, there are still some questions at the position. I believe that with the new offensive coordinator bringing with him a new type of offense, one of the pieces the Vikings are lacking is a true deep threat wide receiver. Being a Gophers fan I watched quite a bit of Big Ten football this past season and one player that jumped off the screen at me was Allen Robinson of Penn State.
· Weighs 210 pounds and is 6 foot 3 inches tall
· Coming into the draft as a junior
· Played three years at Penn State
· First team all-Big Ten last season
· Beat the Penn state receptions record two years ago with 77 catches, then beat his own record last year with 97
· 1,432 receiving yards his last season, but saw a drop off in touchdowns, having 11 two years ago but only 6 this year
· Most productive receiver in school history
Watching Robinson play, I saw some similarities to our own Cordarrelle Patterson when he has the ball in his hands, not quite as good, but definitely a good playmaker with the ball in his hands. He showed very good cutback ability against Ohio State this season, and the play looked almost exactly like one of Pattersons. The one thing I love about Robinson is that he gets the most important thing done, he CATCHES THE BALL. Robinson had some of the most consistent hands in the country and doesn’t show signs of that getting worse. He does not often let the ball get to his body and makes the catch away from him. Has average NFL speed but a very good burst off of the ball and transitions to full speed very quickly. Polished route runner and finds ways to get open when he is in tight coverage. Robinson also does a very nice job adjusting to the ball, as he had to adjust to poor passes from his freshman quarterback this season.
Some negatives from Robinsons play is that he is not exactly the true deep threat receiver I would like, and he did not get a lot of experience anywhere other than the outside at Penn State. His top end speed and athleticism are only average, which will not help him against NFL defenders. He does not have much experience battling for 1-on-1 balls downfield, although he has the height and the hands to win these battles. He is not the best blocker out there, but I do not think that is due to lack of effort. I think he is just a plain old bad blocker, which can be coached up. When running with the ball he does not hold it tight to his body which could result to fumbles at the next level. He also goes down with arm tackles at some points and does not finish running well when there is a lot of traffic. Many scouts project Allen Robinson going in the second to maybe third round, but if he lasts to the third he will be a steal. With players like Sammy Watkins, Mike Evans and Marqise Lee in this draft he will not go in the first round.
I encourage all of you to visit Draftbreakdown.com and watch the videos on Allen Robinson to see if you agree with my assessment of him.