Allen Robinson free agency: Potential landing spots
- Bears receiver Allen Robinson is heading for free agency
- Robinson should be in high-demand this offseason after failing to reach an agreement with Chicago
- Where will Robinson sign as a free agent?
Allen Robinson, or “Old Fashioned” as he likes to be known, appears to be done with Chicago. At least according to his interview on Monday, one day removed from the Bears being comfortably dumped out of the Wild Card Round by the New Orleans Saints.
“I feel personally feel like we had the opportunity to be able to get something done over the past 365 days,” said Robinson, after his five catches for seventy-four yard gam, and he’s correct – the disgruntled receiver had made his frustrations at the lack of communication between himself and the Bears as far back as September, and I don’t know about you, but I’d be pretty frustrated, too.
Robinson has been phenomenal for the Bears since joining just before the 2018 season. Allen was a risky signing for the Bears considering he had missed practically all of the 2017 season after suffering a torn ACL with the Jacksonville Jaguars, but three years on and he’s become the lynchpin of the offence.
One thing to take in to account is how productive he has been and with whom? Allen’s list of quarterbacks include such stellar names as Mitch Trubisky, Matt McGloin, Christian Hackenberg, Blake Bortles, Nick Foles, and… Oh, that’s it. Robinson has consistently put up elite numbers with those names, often with those quarterbacks relying on Allen’s ability to get them out of difficult situations.
Since 2015, we’ve seen countless articles asking things like Is Blake Bortles wasting Allen Robinson’s career, and, should Allen Robinson request a trade from the Bears because people really see his phenomenal ability and want to see him in action with a good quarterback. I mean, when Blake Bortles has his “hot” year in 2015, Allen Robinson racked up 1,400 yards and 14 touchdowns, so just imagine…
So, as he’s likely to hit the market this year and leave his woes behind, and it’ll be interesting to see where he lands, and whether that affects his demands post-trade (because despite him potentially becoming an Unrestricted Free Agent, can we see the Bears not tagging him and accepting a compensatory 2022 3rd rounder? I can’t).
If he gets traded to a team with a great quarterback, would he be willing to take a little less to make it work and challenge for a Superbowl, or will he be demanding that big pay-cheque?
No matter which that is, and he’s entitled to demand a payday should that be his main incentive, there will be a market for a talented receiver who has posted back-to-back 1,000+ yard seasons.
Staying in Chicago
Okay, let’s get the boring one out of the way – he could still sign with the Bears despite what appears a fractured relationship. He’s been there for three years, has personally successful seasons, and even made the playoffs, so they aren’t the worst place he could be.
I mean, he wouldn’t have to move house or anything, but I think he’s been clear on his feelings regarding the franchise tag. Robinson said, “Again, I think everybody knows a little bit on how I feel about that, but I’m not going to really get in to that right now.”
But, other than that, Allen spoke about his love of the organisation and even the McCaskey family. “I mean, right now everything is pretty much on the table,” Robinson said of a potential deal with the Bears.
“Again, over the past three years, since I stepped foot in Chicago, I’ve said that I’ve created a great respect for the organization, for the McCaskey family. Definitely thankful for them and for the facility that we have and the things they provide us to come to work with every day—from the facilities, to the kitchen and everything like that. Even creating relationships with the Payton family. So I’ve created a lot of relationships and everything like that here, but right now, everything is on the table.”
Robinson seems to just feel isolated in an organisation he’s fallen in love with, and he shouldn’t be too difficult to convince in to staying if they can show him how much they appreciate him with a new deal reflecting his true value. So, the ideal scenario right now would be for the Bears to sort a deal with him now so that they don’t risk further isolating him by tagging him, forcing him to demand a trade rather than sit down and talk.
I mean, why not? The Redskins are in a great position defensively right now, and I don’t know about you, but I’m hoping they give Taylor Heinicke the keys to the offence, too, meaning they don’t have to go in to the market for a quarterback and can focus on building that offence up.
In that regard, who better to add than a leading wide-receiver like Robinson?
They have Terry McLaurin on one side who has proved himself a stellar receiver, so adding Robinson on the other side would make sense. It would add another fantastically reliable target for Heinicke, take some pressure off McLaurin, add an incredible weapon to the offence, show the fans they’re serious about moving upwards, and they have more than enough cap space to give Robinson the big payday he potentially wants – for me that’s a win, win, win, win, win situation.
Joining Rodgers in Green Bay
Yeah, I know, this one’s a long-shot, but hear me out: If Robinson is as mad as he sounds at the Chicago Bears for not sorting him a new deal, why wouldn’t he want to go to the Packers where he can team up with Aaron Rodgers and stick it to the Bears twice a year? Imagine it, Allen Robinson returning to Soldier Field in 2021, in the green and yellow of the Pack, backed by Aaron Rodgers.
That’s scary. That’s a game I’d want to see, because I have no doubt that with Rodgers’ personality, Robinson would go off for 100+ 2 touchdown game. Minimum.
But, the Packers, who are desperate to address their receiver issues (at least Rodgers is), would have to rely on Robinson’s desire to get one over on the Bears because they wouldn’t be able to offer him the lucrative deal a team like Washington could.
Still, I like thinking about this one.
Head to New England
Okay, this one should happen, but considering Bill Belichick’s tight-fisted approach to paying people, likely won’t.
The Patriots are in dire straits at receiver – Jakobi Meyers and Damiere Byrd have been solid receivers but they’re not stars, Edelman is old, N’Keal Harry seems like another first round swing and a miss, and, well, that’s really it.
Put it this way – Allen Robinson had more receptions in 2020 than all of the New England receivers combined. That’s not good enough from the Patriots’ side of things. They have been desperate for a reliable outlet all season and were linked with Robinson during his September outburst.
First and foremost, the Patriots need to address their quarterback situation, but following that, they need to acquire some reliable weapons. I
If they trade for a quarterback they’ll need to supply that quarterback with something to target. Even should they choose to move up in the draft for a young quarterback, they’ll need someone for that young quarterback to rely on, and that’s no longer Edelman.
I’d also hope that despite New England’s higher draft pick position, and the depth at the receiver position in this draft, they’ll avoid picking one up given their history at picking the position. They need proven.
Still, would they pay him what he’s worth? Probably not, but they can’t rely on the “take a discount to play for a contender” trick any more…
Ravens get offensive boost
Baltimore are a good team, but the one place they really need to improve is on the outside with a reliable, big-bodied receiver, and Robinson certainly fits the bill.
Hollywood Brown is a fantastic young talent but hasn’t quite exploded in the way many expected him to this year (including me – I hate fantasy football), which isn’t entirely down to him.
Lamar Jackson‘s accuracy has been patchy, he hasn’t seen the looks, and the Ravens are essentially a tough running team, but in their bid to usurp the AFC from the Kansas City Chiefs, they do need to become more capable of exploiting secondaries.
Allen Robinson poses a perfect foil to get Hollywood and Mark Andrews more single coverages. If they really want to become the jewel of the AFC, adding a weapon like Old Fashioned is a must.
Miami complete their offense
Miami could be a great spot for the man formally referred to as A-Rob, too. They’re on the up-and-up but need to boost their ranks if they want to compete with the Bills in the AFC East.
Devante Parker appears to have turned his career around but is still prone to injuries, and that isn’t likely to just not be a thing going forward, and Mike Gesicki offers a fantastic outlet at tight-end, so adding Robinson to the opposite side makes perfect sense.
It adds another fantastic weapon for the young Tua Tagovailoa, but should he be traded to the Texans, even better because you’d be bringing in a top of the range receiver for Deshaun Watson to target. Now that is a partnership I want to see.
Colts have the cap space
It remains to be seen who their quarterback will be, and whether Frank Reich will pull of a deal with the Eagles to reunite him with Carson Wentz, but regardless, adding Robinson would be a solid move to bolster the offense alongside Michael Pittman Jr. and Jonathan Taylor.
Move to The Big Apple
Receivers can essentially find homes anywhere, especially when they’re as incredibly talented as Allen Robinson. It must be pretty exciting to be him right now with all those options available.
I am putting outside chances on both New York teams as they look to build themselves back up to being competitive teams. The Giants could potentially move on from Tate, and neither Slayton nor Shepard really stood out this year, so adding a star could help Daniel Jones develop. Equally, the Jets will need a new weapon regardless of whether they move on from Sam Darnold or not because having just Jameison Crowder isn’t attractive to any replacement, and certainly isn’t enough to help Darnold on the field.
Hell, what do I know. This is the NFL. He will probably end up catching passes for the Vikings despite their divisional rivalry with the Bears, Thielen, Cook, and the emergence of Justin Jefferson. Anything can happen in the NFL, and isn’t that why we love it?