2014 NFL Draft Player Profiles – Penn State WR Allen Robinson

Onward we go with our 2014 NFL Draft profiles and scouting reports of players that might interest the Pittsburgh Steelers. Today we will have a look at Penn State wide receiver Allen Robinson, an underclassman that has now declared for the draft.

Allen Robinson/WR Penn State: 6’3 205

The Good

Reliable on screens

Comes back for the ball well

Great vision after the catch

Gets separation in short areas

Strong hands when he uses them

Hard to find drops

Willing blocker

The Bad

Doesn’t always use his size to his advantage

Not always under control

Not a burner

Has problems getting separation on deep routes at times

Tends to want to body catch too much

No consistent red zone production

Upright too often and tips off break down


Richter-Howard Receiver of the Year (2012, 2013)

First Team All Big Ten (2012, 2013)

All-American (2013)

Biletnikoff Award semifinalists (2013

There are a lot of things to like about Robinson, who led the Big Ten in both receptions and receiving yardage. The thing that jumps out most about him is his size, which in my opinion, he doesn’t always use to his advantage.

Robinson is not a burner and not known to be a deep vertical threat as a result. He does, however have sneaky speed off the line and general gets good separation on quick slants and crossing routes. Robinson shows the ability to work back to the football and it’s hard to find him dropping many passes. He does, however, use his body to catch a lot more than he probably should and doesn’t always rely on his strong hands and wingspan.

Penn State used Robinson quite a bit of wide receiver screens and thus a good portion of Robinson’s catches came within 10 yards of the line of scrimmage. That being said, he still had a robust 14.8 yards per catch average as he possesses good vision with the ball in his hands out in space.

Robinson likes to run too upright at times and his route running needs work. He will tend to break down too early and tips off his route by slowing down instead of getting into his break at full speed. This is not uncommon for young wide receivers. At times, I noticed him not being in full control in his routes as his footwork and balance becomes uneven.

While he did have a handful of WOW catches, I really was expecting more. I count 18 receptions in 2013 of 20 yards or more and I am willing to bet a good deal of those were screens or slants and not catches 20 yards past the line of scrimmage. It should also be noted that he only had one red zone touchdown catch in 2013. A player with his size should obviously have more. He is a willing blocking blocker, but doesn’t give maximum effort all the time when doing it.

The above started off as a screen that looked like it was going to be blown up. Robinson, however turned it into a touchdown and showed his great open field vision in the process.

Good separation on the crossing route but the leap really wasn’t needed. Wasn’t the cleanest catch, either, and as a result the play didn’t end with yardage after the catch.

Nice route and separation but again the jump is not needed. He fights the ball all the way in and it results in a drop.

This is a little better and he gets turned and up the field quickly.

Finally a play where he is forced to use his size and his strong hands. A rare red zone touchdown for him.

Here, he stopped running too soon and didn’t properly judge the flight of the football. This should have been an uncontested catch.

Ending on a positive note, this is perhaps my favorite route and catch of his of the tape I watched. Full speed into his break and a great stop and comeback. He used his hands to catch the ball and moved the chains.

Robinson was easily the best player that Penn State had last season and he was targeted 150 times in total, according to raw play by play stats. He will likely be anywhere from the fifth to seventh wide receiver drafted so that puts him likely being drafted somewhere in the second round. I really view him as possession receiver that will likely be used initially as a third wide receiver by whatever team drafts him. He has a lot of rough edges that need to be cleaned up, but the talent appears to be there.

Projection: Top Fifty

Games Watched: at Ohio St, vs UCF, vs Nebraska

  • steeltown

    Loved watching this kid play


    If he’s coachable, then I can see him being a productive NFL player.

  • Shea Fahr

    I think the young QB did not help him out much at times. Still, a very solid WR…

  • srdan

    I have not seen him play, but he seems like a solid prospect. But one of the negatives listed is that he is not consistently productive in the red zone, and to me that is the only way we should spend a first round pick on offense, to improve our red zone efficiency.

  • Callentown

    Great rundown Dave. Keep ’em coming!

  • Chad H

    I’ve been reviewing a lot of the prospects for this draft. Unless someone falls we would be better off trading our pick and gaining 2nd and 3rd rd picks. There will be tons of talent in those rds.

  • Asmitty56

    it’s worth noting that Penn State never shied away from being a power run team, if they thought they could punch it in by running it in, then they did so with pretty good success.

  • srdan

    Good point. One would have to assume that his redzone blocking should be pretty good then. Which would also make him attractive.

  • James Kling

    Another point to make WRT Robinson is surrounding cast. In the wake of sanctions by NCAA some talent went elsewhere, PSU didn’t get as many top players. And if you look at the offensive stats, the Lions had a rusher with 989 yards (Zwinak) and one with 803 (Belton), but who were the other receiving targets? Robinson had 97-1432-6, and the next most receiving yards were 25-333-3 (James) and 28-312-3 (Felder). Robinson was clearly the guy defenses keyed on in the secondary, yet he still put up over 4 times as much receiving yardage as the next WR.

    IMO Robinson is part of a very nice cluster of R2/R3 talent, along with Matthews, the LSU tandem, Davante Adams, Cooks, and a few others.

  • SumnerYoung

    Robinson’s overall game reminds me of Michael Crabtree. I think, like Crabtree, if Robinson is in the right offensive system with a good QB he will be very tough to defend.

  • patrick Mayfield

    good review.

    He has hands and vision which you can’t coach. Hopefully his lack of top end speed will push him into the mid-second for us.

  • RedCarpetDefense

    Of the “2nd tier” WR’s in this year’s draft, Jared Abbrederis seems overlooked. He performed well this season for the Badgers in spite of them being a run heavy team with little QB talent.

  • blackandgoldBullion

    He looks good to me as a good blocker and possession WR, which is something the Steelers need. I have a feeling the Steelers superstition and luck in later rounds might have them waiting until later to draft a WR. Therefore he won’t get to them, but I would love it if they would trade down to get more 2nd and 3rd round picks, as I think they could acquire talent and potential in bunches.

    If you guys get a chance within the next couple of months I would love it if you could write something where you put together potential trade-down scenarios for the Steelers. I mean last year it was obvious that the 49ers had a good team and that there was no way they wanted to use up all their draft picks. Hell, how many could possibly have made the team?

    So which teams would be good candidates for a trade down scenario? What type of picks might the Steelers get if they end up with extra picks in the 2nd or 3rd round? Praying that they do this come draft time.

  • Matt Searls

    I feel like he doesnt use his size s much as he should, seems to me like a big man playing small. that being said he is still an impressive receiver

  • I like Robinson, but even as a PSU Alum, I would prefer Davonte Adams from Fresno State to AR. He is slightly bigger, uses his size better, and has great hands.

  • Your last sentence is EXACTLY why I don’t want them even sniffing at a first round WR.

  • He’s not an outstanding blocker, but he gets in there.

  • Early on that’s true. More often than not though, Hackenberg was an asset as the season went on. Given defenses were keying on Robinson, he still managed to get the ball in there enough for Robinson to have the best season of any PSU WR in history (which isn’t saying much).

  • Jay Jaber

    Devonte Adams is a beast I like him more then AR. But if we don’t draft a WR in the first two rounds then they should def consider drafting paul Richardson in the third which in my opinion is gonna be the steal in the draft. The guy plays bigger then his size catches the ball with his hands and is his speed is underrated the only thing worries me about him is injury this ow why he lasts till the third but other than that he reminded me of marqise lee and antonio brown

  • pittsburghjoe

    This draft is soo loaded at WR, you can sit back and still get a good one in rounds 2 or 3.

  • Steve

    Robinson has good speed and vision but he lacks using his hands to catch the ball and stiff arming when running with the ball.

  • Steve

    Add Benjamin to that list of WR’s, but he may go in the 1st round.

  • r8erh8er

    The way he catches the ball reminds me of Mike Wallace.