After putting together back-to-back 1,000+ yard seasons for the first time in his career, Allen Robinson is starting to get some national recognition as not only one of the true elite wide receivers in the NFL, but one of the league’s best players. On Monday, Pro Football Focus began releasing its annual list of the 50 best players in the NFL, regardless of position, and on Tuesday they revealed that Robinson checks in at No. 34 overall.
Here’s what PFF had to say about Robinson, and why he’s ranked so highly:
“Robinson has never had an even vaguely competent quarterback throwing him the football, and that dates back to at least high school and perhaps even beyond that. The likes of Christian Hackenberg, Blake Bortles, Mitchell Trubisky and post-deal-with-the-devil Nick Foles have meant that the version of Robinson we have seen is only a fraction of what he could be with a real quarterback.
Maybe Justin Fields can provide that once he gets on the field, but even without that competent quarterback, Robinson was the No. 5-graded receiver in the league last season with a mark of 88.4 overall. He is a perennial top-10 receiver who has achieved all that without the benefit of having a quality passer that most other great receivers have.”
Clearly the crew at PFF has been listening to the Under Center Podcast since we made a similar argument for Robinson to be considered a top-five wide receiver earlier last week. But PFF went further than we did on the pod, by listing Robinson ahead of Julio Jones, who they had ranked at No. 35 overall.
What’s even crazier is that depending on the quarterback play the Bears get from Andy Dalton (and maybe Justin Fields too) we may look back on this ranking at the conclusion of the season and say even No. 34 was too low for Robinson.
Last year, Robinson didn’t make the cut at all. Khalil Mack was the only Bears player on the list at No. 18.
In only three seasons, Robinson’s 255 receptions already rank No. 11 on the Bears all-time leaderboard. If he puts together another 100-catch season in 2021 he’ll jump all the way to No. 4, behind Johnny Morris who caught 356 balls over his 10-year career in Chicago from 1958-1967. Robinson currently ranks No. 15 on the Bears’ receiving yards leaderboard with 3,151 yards. Another 1,000 yards this year will put him at No. 7 on the list, between Curtis Conway and Matt Forte.