Let’s start with who Corey Robinson isn’t.
He’s not a highly talented and experienced veteran tackle who can seamlessly step into the Redskins offense if the situation with Trent Williams doesn’t end with Trent’s return to the field in burgundy and gold.
Corey Robinson is one of the legion of marginal NFL players with just enough talent and potential to hang in there, but not enough to really carve out a rock-solid roster spot for himself anywhere. He’s one of those guys who dwells in the difficult space that is better than “camp body” but not as good as “quality positional depth”.
Robinson is like buying insurance from the General — not your first choice, and maybe not great value, but at least you’ve got a some coverage.
At 6’7” and 315 pounds, 27-year-old Corey Robinson is a former 7th round pick of the Detroit Lions in the 2015 draft. He was active for only one game in his rookie season, but 14 games (3 starts) in his second year, and 8 games (5 starts) in his third, after recovering from a foot injury that affected him throughout the 2017 offseason.
He was traded to the Panthers for a draft pick at the end of the pre-season last year. He managed to stick with the Panthers for only 3 weeks, and was active for only one game before being released. He was out of football for the balance of the 2018 season.
Robinson has experience playing at both left and right tackle, which provides the team with some flexibility as he is an option to man the “swing tackle” role that Ty Nsekhe filled so reliably for such a long time.
The Redskins have had an almost-literal revolving door of offensive tackles so far this season. In the original list of undrafted free agents, the team announced that they had signed Juwann Bushell-Beatty and Chidi Okeke. Both players were released and replaced quickly, around the start of OTAs.
Adam Bitsnowaty was signed to fill the spot vacated by Okeke, but he, in turn, was released before the following week’s OTAs even began. I don’t think Bitsnowaty ever got his Redskins helmet.
Brian Wallace replaced Bitsnowaty, but Wallace was released with an NFI (non-football injury) designation last week.
The current depth chart at OT for the Redskins (not counting Trent Williams) looks something like this:
- Morgan Moses
- Geron Christian
- Ereck Flowers
- Timon Parris
- Blake Hance
- Corey Robinson
It’s obvious that this signing of Corey Robinson is more akin to the roster churn that has been ongoing with Bushnell-Beatty, Okeke, Bitsnowaty, and Wallace than providing a potential replacement for Trent Williams, though Robinson does have some experience playing, and even starting, in the NFL.
The obvious questions that we started with on Friday remain:
- Can the Redskins work things out with their star left tackle and get him on the field before September?
- If not, can the team acquire a competent veteran via free agency or trade in time to make a difference?
The “other” option that Redskins fans were alerted to on Friday was Donald Penn, a 36-year-old veteran free agent who, barring a 2018 injury that cost him most of the season, has proven himself to be talented and reliable. Penn, if he is healthy, is the kind of player that could provide the quality of play needed in TW’s absence. There were reports that the Redskins made him an offer.
John Keim offered this via Twitter just over three hours ago:
Also: There's still a chance the Redskins sign Donald Penn, per sources— John Keim (@john_keim) July 26, 2019
And then there’s this from Ben Standig:
As for Donald Penn, I'm told by sources the Redskins signing Robinson is a separate matter.— Ben Standig (@BenStandig) July 26, 2019
Meaning, it's possible Redskins could add two OT with Williams holding out and Christian sidelined for now.
The $$ a potential hurdle with Penn. Other teams also interested.
The offensive line story in Richmond, it appears, continues.