Kenny Robinson 2020 NFL Draft Profile

Kenny Robinson
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Kenny Robinson Overview

Position: Safety
Height: 6’-2”
Weight: 198 pounds
School: West Virginia/XFL

Kenny Robinson 2020 NFL Draft Profile

Kenny Robinson quite literally has the most unique playing background of any prospect in the 2020 NFL Draft. After two years at West Virginia, Robinson opted to spend the 2019 season in the XFL with the St. Louis Blackhawks. According to Robinson, his mother had been recently diagnosed with cancer and the opportunity to make money in the XFL to support his family was too good to pass up. Unfortunately, the league folded after five weeks, but Robinson still managed to record 19 tackles on 267 snaps.

Robinson initially entered the collegiate football landscape as a three-star recruit. A Pennsylvania product, Robinson ended up signing with West Virginia in 2017. During his two years with the Mountaineers, the safety recorded a combined 103 tackles, 15 assists, and 12 interceptions.

Strengths

  • Effortless movement across the field;
  • Instinctive player that reads and reacts to everything he sees;
  • Ferocious, old-school safety that packs a punch and can dislodge passes with hard hits;
  • Aggressive in the run game, gets around blocks and finds the ball carrier;
  • Always takes the most efficient route to where he needs to be – minimal wasted movement;
  • Maintained collegiate level of play against advanced competition in XFL.

Weaknesses

  • Aggressiveness can be a double-edged sword as he sometime overpursues his first read;
  • Smaller 2019 sample size thanks to abbreviated XFL season;
  • Athleticism is something of a question thanks to no Pro Day or NFL Combine;
  • Inconsistent tackling fundamentals;
  • Some communication issues in coverage, although it’s unclear who is typically at fault there.

NFL Comparison: Thomas DeCoud

Teams With Need at Position:  Cleveland BrownsDallas CowboysLas Vegas RaidersNew England PatriotsPhiladelphia EaglesSan Francisco 49ers

Projection: 4th Round

Bottom Line on Kenny Robinson

Kenny Robinson is one of the most interesting safeties in this entire class. Quite literally nobody has his XFL background, so he is something of a difficult evaluation in that regard. His time in the XFL works as a double-edged sword, so let’s start with the positives. The XFL is probably a higher level of competition than the average college football game, and Robinson still managed to look like his old self. This implies that he should be able to handle the transition to the NFL, although it’s still far from a guarantee. He’s an instinctive player that takes good angles and plays with a ferocity that should attract NFL teams. He has the range to make plays in the passing game and the grit, toughness, and strength to hold his own in the box against the run.

Unfortunately, Robinson also carries a few red flags. Thanks to COVID-19, the XFL folded after just five weeks. Because of this, there isn’t much to go off of in terms of 2019 tape. Adding to the confusion is the fact that Robinson didn’t participate in the NFL Combine or in any Pro Day. Athletic testing numbers can be overrated, but they still matter.

In terms of on-field worries, Robinson’s aggression can easily be used against him. He trusts his instincts a little too much and oftentimes leaves his zone if he thinks the ball is going to a certain part of the field. This wasn’t too much of an issue in the XFL or in college, but NFL quarterbacks can take advantage of this. Additionally, his tackling leaves something to be desired and needs to be addressed by his next coaching staff. Ultimately, he’s a solid mid-round pick that should be the first safety off the bench in sub-packages.

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