The Bears are betting big on Allen Robinson and are expected to sign the former Jacksonville Jaguars receiver to a three year, $42 million contract on Wednesday, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter. Robinson won’t turn 25 until August and combined for 153 receptions, 2,283 yards and 20 touchdowns between 2015 and 2016.
Robinson, though, tore his ACL on the third play of the 2017 season. It was a freak, non-contact injury, but coupled with a broken foot that cost him the final six games of his rookie year, he missed a total of 21 games in his four years in Jacksonville.
Robinson told ESPN’s Adam Schefter last week that his rehab is going well and he expects to be fully cleared “well before” training camp and won’t have any limitations when he gets back on the field.
“It’s going really (well),” Robinson said of his rehab process. “For me now, being able to get back to doing some on the field stuff when it comes to sprinting, jumping, plyo, things like that, really getting back into some football movements has been exciting. When you’re out of your football element for a few months that could kind of be tiresome, mentally, just getting ready to get back to my old self. So it’s been fun.”
Still, while Robinson sounded confident in his readiness for training camp and the Bears are optimistic about Cameron Meredith’s recovery, there is some risk assumed in having the team’s presumptive two top targets coming off torn ACLs. Expect the Bears to still pursue more targets for Mitchell Trubisky, as most of Monday's rumors centered around the team's interest in pass-catching tight ends and other receivers.
If the Bears get a healthy and effective Robinson, they can project out for years him being Trubisky’s go-to top target. Robinson is one of only 14 players in NFL history to have a season in which he totaled at least 1,400 yards and caught 14 touchdowns, and it’s a pretty impressive list of receivers to accomplish that feat:
Robinson is barely a year older than the 23-year-old Trubisky, is a few months younger than the 24-year-old Adam Shaheen and is about a year younger than the 25-year-old Cody Whitehair and the 25-year-old Meredith. With him, the Bears not only landed arguably best receiver on the free agent market, but someone who fits with their youth movement on offense.
“I know the level of play that I can get to and I know that my best ball is really still in front of me,” Robinson told Schefter.
Ideally, the Bears can have Robinson, Meredith, Shaheen, Whitehair, Trubisky, Tarik Cohen and maybe Jordan Howard hit their primes at the same time, along with whoever they draft on the offensive side of the ball in April. A lot still needs to fall into place for that to happen, but that could make for an exciting, potent offense the Bears hope they could ride to a playoff berth sometime down the road.