The University of Alabama boasts one of the best, if not the best defensive line in the country. Junior A’Shawn Robinson is the best of the bunch when it comes to defensive tackles in the 2016 NFL Draft. This massive human being is a pleasure to watch in run support but struggles mightily with his pass rushing.
Robinson is a 6’4 315 lb behemoth that has shockingly good quickness for his size to go along with incredible strength that makes it nearly impossible to be moved by just one linemen.
+Run Support: Robinson is arguably the best run stuffing defensive tackle in this class. Teams like Tennessee, LSU and Georgia made it a priority not to run at Robinson because it would likely end in no gain. He is so big than one linemen can’t move him on a run block, it usually takes two guys to hold him back from making an impact. Robinson from day one is going to excel in the NFL in run support whether it is in a 3-4 or 4-3 scheme. No better game shows his impact more than his game against LSU and Leonard Fournette.
+Athletic: For his size, Robinson is an incredible athlete. Robinson and Baylor defensive tackle Andrew Billings have athleticism you would not expect from a man that big. Robinson is nimble, quick and has impressive lateral quickness that allows him to chase down ball carriers. He should test out extremely well at the combine in all athletic drills.
+Strength: One-on-one, there is no guard, center or tackle that can match the strength of A’Shawn Robinson. Single or double teamed it is impossible to match that brute strength he brings every play. He is a monster bull rusher, almost every time he’s matched up one-on-one he pushes the guard/center back about 3-5 yards. Even on double teams, Robinson is able to hold his own a majority of the times.
–Pass Rusher: Robinson has literally zero pass rush moves outside of a bull rush. In college he was able to just use strength and size to get sacks. I wonder if teams are just going to view him as an elite run stopper who will get the occasional bull rush sack. I have not seen anything that dictates he will be an effective pass rusher in the NFL. In today’s day and age of the NFL, pass rushing is a must. Early on in his career he probably will be subbed out on long passing downs due to his ineffective pass rushing skills.
–Takes Plays Off: I saw some really bad instances of Robinson taking a view plays off and not even giving any effort. Whether it is fatigue or effort he did this enough where it was concerning. Lots of times he was lackadaisical off the line and easily the last one off the line. I like to think it is fatigue that was causing this but it will be interesting to see how some teams view this. This one against Tennessee was one of the worst I saw in studying his games.
A’Shawn Robinson is an absolute monster when he wants to be. He is the kind of defensive tackle that a team can insert into their starting lineup from day one regardless of scheme. Robinson will test well during the combine and most likely be an early first round selection come draft time. I graded him out as a top-15 player and is someone who will contribute from day one.