A’Shawn Robinson: 2016 Cowboys DT Prospect

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A’Shawn Robinson, a Fort Worth native, is a nasty and tenacious mauler for the Alabama defensive line and was the only defensive finalist for the 2015 Outland Trophy award.

A'shawn robinson

A’Shawn Robinson is not only the heart and soul of the Crimson Tides’ front 7, but a team leader. He was a First Team All American selection by the SEC coaches. His intensity is evident in the locker room. He has been known to to give a toungue lashing to teammates he felt are not giving enough effort.

A’Shawn Robinson has been nicknamed the “Gentle Giant” and rightfully so. Much like Hall of Famer Reggie White, off the field he is a soft spoken, reserved and gentle man, but a switch flips when he hits the field and his wrath is unleashed. I am one who always prefers to find my trench players in the SEC, because on the average, they are going against the biggest, strongest, and fastest front sevens or offensive lines  in the NCAA.

a'shawn robinson A’Shawn Robinson, DT

Height|Weight: 6-4  312

College: Alabama

40 time: 5.04

Grade: 95.8

Round: Top 15 prospect

“As a D-lineman, you’ve got to be the enforcer, you are the dogs of the team, of the defense, so you have got to make sure you force everything and make sure everybody is on point as well as you are” said Robinson at the Omni Hotel in Dallas.

Official Alabama Team Bio:

A’Shawn Robinson, JUNIOR: A consensus Freshman All-American during his first year on campus … named consensus All-American in 2015, earning first-team votes from the Sporting News, Associated Press, FWAA and AFCA … also earned second-team nods from Walter Camp and USA Today … finalist for the Outland Trophy… a disruptive force on the inside: 35 of his 43 tackles have come on runs with 7.5 for a loss (-25 yards), while adding 10 quarterback hurries, two pass breakups, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery … named a Bednarik Award semifinalist along with teammate Reggie Ragland … earned defensive player of the week accolades from the Alabama coaching staff for his efforts against Middle Tennessee, Ole Miss, at Georgia, and against Arkansas and LSU.

A'shawn robinson

Film Study:

  • A’Shawn Robinson has a mammoth thick build and looks the part of an NFL DT. Plays with good power at the point and has strong active hands. Has a good punch and uses good arm extension to prevent blockers from getting good hand placement. Has excellent upper body strength and thick powerful legs that he keeps churning to collapse pockets. Sheds and stacks well while showing the ability to flow across the line and make stops against the run.
  • A’Shawn Robinson has the ability to collapse the pocket and was able to move double teams backwards. Has an outstanding bull rush and once engaged one on one, many times it looked like the blocker was on skates moving backwards. Excellent awareness and instincts. Uses his size to clog up passing lanes and gets his hands up. Good tackler and has the power to bring down ball carriers with arm tackles. Shows surprising quickness when in pursuit of the QB. Disruptive force in the middle. Does a great job of creating lanes for the linebackers.
  • A’Shawn Robinson is a bit stiff in the hips and lacks elite straight line speed. Needs to improve his get off. Raw prospect: was only a two year starter at Alabama. Needs to develop better technique. Needs to work on some more pass rush moves. Despite having decent feet, he needs to improve his lateral movement. Needs to rely less on his power. Needs to watch his pad level at times.

A'shawn robinson

Overall, A’Shawn Robinson is a rare find at the 1 tech position and has the ability to play the 5 or the zero in a 3-4. I see him as a projection pick. What he lacks in overall athletic ability, he makes up for with his power, tenacious style of play, a high football IQ, work ethic, awareness and instincts. This is a guy who never takes a play off and wears down offensive linemen. If there is one thing you can be sure of: Nick Saban players are well coached And NFL ready.

Too many times fans look at stats as an indicator. However, the job of the 1 tech is to draw double teams enabling the 3 to make plays, collapse pockets and clog up running lanes. Too many times the Cowboys couldn’t get off the field on 3rd and short because teams were able to gash them up the middle. Too many times QBs were able to step up and make deep throws on 3rd and long. If you watch A’Shawn Robinson play, he may not get a lot of sacks, but what he does is draw enough attention in the middle to allow Jarran Reed to make plays; and despite the double teams, he still manages to get pressures, sacks, tackles for loss and create a pile in the middle or collapse the pocket.

I believe that much like Dontari Poe, who was also raw when he got drafted, with some time to develop his technique and improve his get off, A’Shawn Robinson will become one of the best defensive tackles to come out in a long time. You can coach his get off and technique, but you can’t coach his nasty, motor, work ethic, IQ, natural power and instincts. In most cases I wouldn’t take a DT at 4, but if Bosa and Ramsey are off the board, I would pull the trigger. Most don’t realize how much a big nasty DT can help the players around him: unless of course they have watched some Poe, Wilfork or Suh tape.

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  • Great report. This guy is built like a tank. Excellent muscle tone for a big dude. His power and motor jumped off the tape at me when I was studying Reed. There would be no complaints from me if Jerry drafted him. Crawford’s numbers would improve a lot with him at his side. We would also have a much better 3rd down defense.

  • Great report. This guy is built like a tank. Excellent muscle tone for a big dude. His power and motor jumped off the tape at me when I was studying Reed. There would be no complaints from me if Jerry drafted him. Crawford’s numbers would improve a lot with him at his side. We would also have a much better 3rd down defense.

  • gcarr1213

    albeam17 It’s kind of hard to draft a 1 tech that early for me. I would draft him in a trade down. I could see a team like the Raiders grabbing him later to pair with Williams. They have some nice rushers already in Smith and Mack, they could use some big guys, they have Williams. Raiders have drafted well as of late. They also get higher characters guys, and they don’t take risks on injured or boom or bust prospects.

  • gcarr1213

    albeam17 It’s kind of hard to draft a 1 tech that early for me. I would draft him in a trade down. I could see a team like the Raiders grabbing him later to pair with Williams. They have some nice rushers already in Smith and Mack, they could use some big guys, they have Williams. Raiders have drafted well as of late. They also get higher characters guys, and they don’t take risks on injured or boom or bust prospects.

  • gcarr1213

    Albeam thoughts on Sean Smith from KC coming to Dallas? In an ideal scenario I would like to have him play CB at 6’3″ 218 lbs. sign him to a 3 year deal, and draft a CB in round 3 or 4 like William Jackson to play opposite him until he’s ready. And of course draft Jalen Ramsey in round 1.

  • gcarr1213 I would have to study him. Apple from OSU could be a solid 2nd round CB. In the modern NFL you need corners at least 6-0 to compete with all these big physical receivers.

  • gcarr1213 I would have to study him. Apple from OSU could be a solid 2nd round CB. In the modern NFL you need corners at least 6-0 to compete with all these big physical receivers.

  • gcarr1213

    albeam17 gcarr1213 With Desmond King returning to school Apple is the most physical CB left. I say William Jackson fits us a little better, with is ability to play off. He is an inconsistent tackler, but it’s not like he isn’t capable of it, he just tends to go for the big hit more than the tackle.

  • gcarr1213

    albeam17 gcarr1213 With Desmond King returning to school Apple is the most physical CB left. I say William Jackson fits us a little better, with is ability to play off. He is an inconsistent tackler, but it’s not like he isn’t capable of it, he just tends to go for the big hit more than the tackle.

  • gcarr1213

    albeam17 gcarr1213 If we get Ramsey with our first pick, it’s hard for me to justify going for another player in the secondary right after.

  • gcarr1213 albeam17 I have had enough missed tackles to last me a lifetime

  • gcarr1213 albeam17 I have had enough missed tackles to last me a lifetime

  • gcarr1213 albeam17 I have to agree, but 1 tech is a must Hayden is Garbage

  • BigDIndiana

    good write up. don’t see them taking a true 1 tech at 4 but I would love to replace hayden with this dude. if bosa is gone I would like a trade back and get him or a half dozen guys around the 10-15 range. some good fits for us there and I want to be on the good end of the “trade the farm” deals.

    Another guy I like is Buckner from Oregon. third on the team in tackles from a 3-4 end, position that doesn’t usually get stats. 6’7″ 290 and would probably have position flex to play several spots, maybe all 4. They like position flex…..which leads me to think Ramsey is their pick now…assuming Bosa is gone.

  • BigDIndiana I don’t know if he could move inside or not in a 4-3

  • BigDIndiana He is the 2nd best DL in this draft behind Bosa. I don’t see him being there for a trade down. I learned a long time ago not to dispute Cas players or grades.

  • BigDIndiana He is the 2nd best DL in this draft behind Bosa. I don’t see him being there for a trade down. I learned a long time ago not to dispute Cas players or grades.

  • BigDIndiana

    albeam17 BigDIndiana  He is 15-20 pounds heavier than Irving who is also 6″7″ who had some success inside…long arms. 3-4 ends usually just eat blocks and 3rd on the team in tackles is impressive, well to me anyway 🙂

  • gcarr1213

    Reggie Ragland is one of those LB, that is just so physical. If he makes contact with a ball carrier, the play is automatically over. It’s just like Dan Bailey making a FG, you just assume it’s going to be successful. Ragland isn’t as rangy as you would like, he isn’t bad in coverage though. In terms of ability, I think he’s slightly below CJ Mosley as a player, but is just more physical, and a better tackler, and is a guy an OC hopes not to meet in the regular season.

  • BigDIndiana

    albeam17 BigDIndiana  3rd best LOL. best pure 1 tech for sure. I think if you put nkemdiche in mariniili system he would thrive and could play all 4 spots. him and buckner more versatile in the system, but robinson cant be beat as a 1. depends on what they are looking for….hope they fall out of favor with hayden as he is a rotational guy/backup at best.

  • BigDIndiana

    albeam17 BigDIndiana  3rd best LOL. best pure 1 tech for sure. I think if you put nkemdiche in mariniili system he would thrive and could play all 4 spots. him and buckner more versatile in the system, but robinson cant be beat as a 1. depends on what they are looking for….hope they fall out of favor with hayden as he is a rotational guy/backup at best.

  • gcarr1213

    BigDIndiana albeam17 I don’t think Marinelli can afford to have Hayden there anymore. He knows that we struggled on third and short, and we couldn’t stop the run consistently. Maybe not in round 1, but in round 2, Dallas will have their pick of big 1 tech DT.

  • BigDIndiana albeam17 I see position flex in robinson too. None of them have his raw power. I haven’t studied Bucner yet

  • gcarr1213 BigDIndiana albeam17  nkemdiche is falling

  • BigDIndiana albeam17 It’s rare you see a 1 tech have 43 tackles in a shorter college season. Especially so many TFLs

  • BigDIndiana Thank You. I will have to watch Bucner

  • gcarr1213 I like Ragland a lot

  • gcarr1213 BigDIndiana albeam17 I am tired of waiting until later rounds for DTs. I want the best player available at 4 regardless though. There is not a QB in this draft worth a top 5 pick. It sickens to hear people who don’t study tape saying draft a QB at 4. That is crazy and a huge reach. I want Bosa Ramsey or Robinson at 4 period.

  • gcarr1213 albeam17 If we get Ramsey at 4, then back to best available in round 2 or try and trade back up in to first for a DT or Ragland. If we could get a 2nd for Leary I would trade him.

  • gcarr1213 albeam17 We have all seen what not having a good one has done to this team on 3rd down. I want quality players that fill an immediate need. I don’t care what position they are. I care about how I graded him. If he is a day one starter and potential all pro, I will draft him. NFL teams over analyze the value of positions. Using hindsight there isn’t a team in the NFL wouldn’t take Suh at 4. I could see a team trading two 1sts for him. I see the same type of player in Robinson. When I grade players I look at who they will be within 1-3 years. Pretty or flashy picks don’t win championships: smart grading and strategy at all positions does. That’s what makes best available so important.

  • gcarr1213 albeam17 I am a huge fan of Apple and he may end up the best corner in this draft with some polishing.

  • gcarr1213 albeam17 The biggest problem with the Cowbys has been spedning a fortune on, or using high picks on Skill positions while neglecting the DL. They cut a guy like ware and have no one developed and ready to step up. You will never win the NFL with no depth. Paying huge contracts out to a few skill players makes you take short cuts at other positions. If you look at championship teams they have balance and a solid defense. The Pats stay a dynasty because they don’t dish out those big contracts and like to draft trenches early.

  • gcarr1213 albeam17 Ideally there would be some 6-2 or bigger CBs, but anyone tall, fast and with ball skills usually ends up a WR. It makes it tough to find big CBs.

  • gcarr1213 albeam17 Ideally there would be some 6-2 or bigger CBs, but anyone tall, fast and with ball skills usually ends up a WR. It makes it tough to find big CBs.

  • gcarr1213

    CowgirlCas22 BigDIndiana albeam17 Buckner is one of my favorite players, but doesn’t fit in our scheme. He isn’t twitchy enough for a DE, and is way too tall to move inside. He’s a 3-4 DE in my opinion.

  • gcarr1213

    CowgirlCas22 BigDIndiana albeam17 Buckner is one of my favorite players, but doesn’t fit in our scheme. He isn’t twitchy enough for a DE, and is way too tall to move inside. He’s a 3-4 DE in my opinion.

  • gcarr1213

    CowgirlCas22 gcarr1213 albeam17 Yes Broddus and Helman brought up the idea of a 2nd round tender for Leary. I have a hard time believing that the Colts, Chargers, Seahawks, and Titans wouldn’t at least call for that. An experienced starter, who would still be a starter, if Dallas hadn’t lucked out in getting Collins. That’s two second rounders if it comes to that.

  • BigDIndiana

    CowgirlCas22 gcarr1213 BigDIndiana albeam17  got caught with weed…gonna scare off teams. most athletic DT I have ever seen. Only DT ever nominated for the Thorpe award.

  • BigDIndiana

    CowgirlCas22 gcarr1213 BigDIndiana albeam17  got caught with weed…gonna scare off teams. most athletic DT I have ever seen. Only DT ever nominated for the Thorpe award.

  • BigDIndiana

    CowgirlCas22 BigDIndiana albeam17  I won’t cry at all if they take him. If he is rated at 15 and you think he is a guy that will immediately impact your team the most…..go get him. They did that with Freddy a few years back, I had him as our 2nd round pick in my mock, but we desperately needed a center and not sure he would be there they grabbed him. I don’t view it as “reaching” if you are sold on a guy…not just a need.

  • BigDIndiana

    CowgirlCas22 BigDIndiana albeam17  Robinson wouldn’t really need position flex as he would automatically be the best 1 tech on the team by far. No need to move him to 3. When we were putting Mincey at the 1 at times that is a sure sign we need help there badly.

  • BigDIndiana

    CowgirlCas22 BigDIndiana albeam17  Robinson wouldn’t really need position flex as he would automatically be the best 1 tech on the team by far. No need to move him to 3. When we were putting Mincey at the 1 at times that is a sure sign we need help there badly.

  • BigDIndiana

    CowgirlCas22 gcarr1213 albeam17  Robinson would be a cinch to be a day one starter. Ragland probably would be too at ILB. Bosa opposite DLaw. Not sure how Ramsey would play out…but as both our safeties up after this year pairing him with 31 would set up a good pair of safeties that could actually cover.

  • BigDIndiana

    CowgirlCas22 BigDIndiana  Had 10.5 sacks and 17 TFL this year….. from a 3-4 end. Watched him twice this year and is a hard dude to deal with. I think he would be a beast from the 3 tech under RM.

  • BigDIndiana

    CowgirlCas22 BigDIndiana  Had 10.5 sacks and 17 TFL this year….. from a 3-4 end. Watched him twice this year and is a hard dude to deal with. I think he would be a beast from the 3 tech under RM.

  • BigDIndiana

    CowgirlCas22 gcarr1213 albeam17  Would put him in the mix if we did a trade back, as good as Hargreaves imo

  • BigDIndiana

    CowgirlCas22 gcarr1213 albeam17  Would put him in the mix if we did a trade back, as good as Hargreaves imo