Rams Nearly Lost Allen Robinson to Super Bowl Team, Insider Reveals

Allen Robinson

Getty Allen Robinson completes a catch.

Turns out if it weren’t for the Los Angeles Rams, wide receiver Allen Robinson would’ve played on February 12 in Glendale, Arizona in his first career Super Bowl.

In a long-form article released by Rams insider Jourdan Rodrigue of The Athletic on Thursday, February 23, the Rams managed to sway “A-Rob” away from the NFC champion Philadelphia Eagles. And that was before the Eagles delivered the blockbuster trade that earned them A.J. Brown via the Tennessee Titans on NFL draft night. But as Rodrigue detailed, Robinson got endorsed by two prominent members of the Rams in front of head coach Sean McVay.

“The Rams don’t generally fit free-agent receivers into their team-building model, but they were thin at the position, so McVay checked in with [Matthew] Stafford and [Cooper] Kupp, who emphatically endorsed veteran wideout Allen Robinson. Robinson was on the verge of signing with the Eagles at the time, team and league sources told The Athletic in September,” Rodrigue said.

One phone call, though, did the trick in ensuring Robinson would head to the “Rams House” and prevent “A-Rob” from trekking east.

“But after a late-night phone call, McVay’s, Stafford’s and Kupp’s enthusiasm — and the role they described to him as a high-volume No. 2 receiver in the Rams offense — swayed Robinson to sign a three-year, $46.5 million contract,” Rodrigue wrote.

Clearly, if it wasn’t for the endorsement from the two centerpieces of the Rams offense and that late phone call, Robinson would’ve caught passes from Pro Bowler Jalen Hurts as well as play in an offense featuring 1,000-yard wideout DeVonta Smith and tight end Dallas Goedert. And perhaps the Eagles wouldn’t have had to make their own phone call to lure in Brown.

Chemistry, Though, Never Materialized Between Matthew Stafford & Allen Robinson Right Away

Unfortunately for Robinson, his first round with the Rams witnessed his numbers drop from his final season with the Chicago Bears — settling for 33 catches and 339 yards with an average of 10.3 yards per catch. If anything, Robinson bettered his touchdown total with the Rams…but only three touchdowns.

Rams fans know that Robinson couldn’t finish out the year with a foot fracture and had to navigate in an offense marred with an injury pileup on the offensive line that eventually made its way to the QB room. Yet, Rodrigue pointed out that the chemistry between Stafford and Robinson never got off the ground even when the two were in front of Rams fans at UC Irvine for late July/early August.

“Robinson impressed coaches and support staff in training camp, but the bulk of his catches came from backup John Wolford,” Rodrigue said. “A recurring elbow injury had flared up for Stafford, and after an anti-inflammatory elbow injection in March, the Rams determined he would not be able to throw into the start of training camp.

Rodrigue added: “When the season started, the Rams struggled to find any rhythm on offense with a quarterback who hadn’t had much practice time with his skill position players.”

Can Allen Robinson Bounce Back, Even With Coaching Changes?

Now 2023 presents a new opportunity for Stafford, Robinson and company to develop camaraderie and shake off the memories of the painful 2022 season. Already, “A-Rob” has one believer in NFL Network Fantasy Football analyst LaQuan Jones.

Robinson, though, will have to improve by turning to his third different offensive coordinator in the last three seasons.

“A-Rob” was with Bill Lazor in Chicago in 2021. Then he had Liam Coen as his OC last season (Rodrigue included Coen called plays for the Rams in the Week 12 loss to the Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs). Now, Mike LaFleur has the offensive reins.

While LaFleur has worked with Pro Bowler Deebo Samuel and top New York Jets rookie Garrett Wilson last season, he’s never had a red zone presence like Robinson to work with. LaFleur now gets his chance at helping get Robinson to become the 90-100 catch he was with the Bears.

Read More