Free Agent Stock Watch: Bears WR Allen Robinson

It’s safe to say that Allen Robinson isn’t a happy camper. Over the weekend, the Bears wide receiver liked a series of tweets from fans who encouraged him to skip town (Twitter link via Dov Kleiman). He’ll have the opportunity to leave Chicago in the spring when his contract expires, but it’s not a given that the market will meet his expectations. 

Earlier this year, we heard that Robinson saw himself as the top wide receiver in this year’s free agent class. That would mean a deal of at least $20MM per year, putting him in the neighborhood of Michael Thomas and Julio Jones who have much stronger resumes. Thomas’ camp would probably point to Keenan Allen and Amari Cooper — receivers who did not have the same credentials as Thomas or Jones, but still topped $20MM/year.

The Bears weren’t willing to go there when the two sides last spoke, but they also kept Robinson past the early November trade deadline. Since then, they’ve watched their playoff hopes dwindle. The Bears, riding a five-game losing streak, may wind up losing their star receiver for nothing but a compensatory pick.

The Bears’ quarterback situation hasn’t provided Robinson with the ideal platform, but he’s still been fairly productive from an individual standpoint. Last year, Robinson managed a solid 98 grabs for 1,147 yards — his best showing since his 2015 coming out party with the Jaguars. Through eleven games this year, he has a stat line of 71/829/5, bolstered by his latest outing against the Packers. Robinson’s 11.7 yards per catch average over the last two years doesn’t exactly jump off the page, but it’s evident that the talent is there, and Robinson has been largely healthy over that stretch.

But, even with the most favorable view possible, Robinson probably won’t be the kingpin of this WR class. Chris Godwin and Kenny Golladay are also on track to hit the open market — ditto for JuJu Smith-Schuster, who could probably be had for less than Robinson.

Given the strength of the WR class and uncertainty of the 2021 salary cap, it might behoove Robinson to smooth things out with the Bears. Or, at minimum, pretend to smooth out with the Bears, in order to fetch the best possible deal. If Robinson can keep the incumbent Bears involved, he could land somewhere near the $18MM/year mark like Tyreek Hill and Odell Beckham Jr. If he can’t, he might be looking at ~$16MM/year offers, similar to Cooper Kupp‘s recent Rams extension.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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31 comments on “Free Agent Stock Watch: Bears WR Allen Robinson

    • BAINES03

      Their QB situation is just as bad as the Bears. Plus, they don’t like paying people at the market rate. So… no.

      • kroeg49

        BAINES03. If the Bears aren’t paying market rate, why are they struggling against the cap. It’s the General Manager and coaching the problem. Not drafting or signing the right players

  1. ‘But, even with the most favorable view possible, Robinson probably won’t be the kingpin of this WR class. Chris Godwin and Kenny Golladay are also on track to hit the open market — ditto for JuJu Smith-Schuster,’

    Robinson is better than Smith-Schuster and way better than Godwin and Golladay. It’s safe to say he *will* be the kingpin of this WR class and you don’t need ‘the most favorable view possible’ to see it.

    • Oooof

      I think it’s reasonable to put Godwin at the top of the list. He’s younger than Golladay and Robinson, and has shown just as much upside and consistency. To be clear, I think all three are great. Golladay and Robinson are more similar than I ever realized, from age to size to PFF grades. They don’t look the same on the field, but ranking them right with each other makes sense. As for JuJu, I like him, but he’s got the least upside, the least consistency, and I would think twice about signing a receiver the Steelers are ready to let walk. I know they’re extra stacked right now, but when’s the last time the Steelers let a receiver walk and he flourished elsewhere? Emmanuel Sanders?

    • jonnyzuck

      true, I think I’d choose him over those other guys although they’re all close

  2. Hannibal8us

    Losing the only competent component of their offense would be a killer for the bears. Hopefully they decide to fire Pace and Nagy soon so that a new GM could try to retain Robinson.

    • keysox

      Pace and Nagy must go. Probably happen on “black Monday”
      White Sox got LaRussa. Bears should see what Ditka is doing

      • maximumvelocity

        So you want someone who is older, more bigoted, more out of touch with the modern game and players, and away from the sideline longer than LaRussa. That will go over real well.

        • ortsacnilrats

          The fact I had to Google who was older between the two only to find they are both old AF should mean something.

      • thebare54

        No hell no Dikka was a Trump theory man Bad Dreamer believe in QAnon he no longer there with a football mind

    • Ak185

      I doubt this ends up happening, but that would be an amazing signing. Most of the time, proposed signings/trades by fans end up being wishful thinking at best, but it would be a good fit for Rodgers to have someone to go up and high-point the ball on deep throws, which is an area where the Packers suffer. Adams is the only consistent receiver they have with the ability to play outside, and he moves around a good bit. Adams certainly can make tough catches, but that’s not his top skill. Again, he can do it, but having someone else who take that pressure off Adams can free him up to move more and hurt the defense on different types of routes.

      MVS and St. Brown have flashed (MVS more than St.Brown due to injuries), and Lazard is on the edge of being a reliable receiver. All are meant to play outside. However, due to injuries, mental mistakes, or athletic ability (breaking press coverage, for instance), they’ve had various things hold them back. Green Bay has made it obvious that they’d be comfortable moving on from Rodgers-picking up Robinson to play outside is a great way to maximize that window. However, I do not see Gutekunst offering Robinson what he’d want in a high-end deal.

      • rondon

        He knows the Bears want to sign him. Like a lot of other teams there will be major cap issues in the offseason and there will be a ton of FA players. He’s putting on his social media show like they all do now. Truth is, the Bears can franchise tag him. He ain’t goin’ to Green Bay.

    • Oooof

      A legit #1 receiver isn’t a waste of cap space just because you’ve mishandled the rest of the payroll. Improving the O line shouldn’t cost that much money, and a better QB would make it look better. And an O line can only help a QB so much if you have zero receivers who can get open. And their defense is fine. It would be even better if the offense could stay on the field.

  3. They can’t use their complete lack of offensive talent around him as an excuse not to want to pay him. He’s been well above average given the QBs throwing to him and deserves near what Cooper got

  4. crosseyedlemon

    “Given the strength of the WR class and uncertainty of the 2021 salary cap, it might behoove Robinson to smooth things out with the Bears. Or, at minimum, pretend to smooth out with the Bears, in order to fetch the best possible deal”.

    I agree but get the feeling he will use Twitter to sabotage his future market value as so many other players have done.

    • Oooof

      I think you overestimate how many people have actually damaged their value by going on social media. Guys who are still seen as worth the money still get it and ones who don’t probably weren’t anyway.

      • crosseyedlemon

        It’s rather comical to see some of these players going on Twitter thinking they can do a better job than professional agents. How much did Dez Bryant lose trying to negotiate his own deal after leaving Dallas? That should have been a wake up call for players but they still can’t seem to resist the lure of Twitter.

        • Oooof

          Or maybe Dez’s big problems were that he was on the decline and known for being a headache in the building. Can you name a guy who messed up his free agency through social media posts who wasn’t also past his peak years or known for bad behavior in person? I wouldn’t surprised if some agents encourage social media stuff. Look at the Jalen Ramsey shenanigans: They got him traded to a better team and better organization, who gave him a huge contract.

          • crosseyedlemon

            I think your actually providing support for my argument here. As you stated, most of these guys are headaches, malcontents or guys with a history of bad behavior so the last thing they should be doing is going onto Twitter to negotiate for themselves.

            • Ak185

              Gotta side with lemon here personally. Plenty of players have been disciplined or lost face due to social media incidents. Antonio Brown’s Instagram forays are an example, but considering his other issues, are harder to point to specifically. That said, his posts certainly made teams uncomfortable before his criminal actions did-the livestream from the Steelers’ locker room being an example.

              Cardale Jones’ tweet about going to class is an example. The guy already faced an uphill climb and hurt evaluations of his character with that. As for star players, Jamal Adams and Stephon Diggs ended up being traded-one could argue that that is what they wanted, but that did certainly affect their likelihood of being extended by their home teams. Michael Thomas’ Twitter feud with Stephon Gilmore and DeVante Parker definitely contributed to his discipline. Remember Martavis Bryant? He had some Twitter incidents that contributed to his being traded and eventually cut.

              I can understand your point, Oof, and agree that certainly there is most often another significant reason other than social media why players lose face. Nobody gets wary of a star just because of Twitter or Instagram. However, players’ activity there DOES show how they respond to problems, which becomes a part of evaluating their character. For fringe players, like Jones, that can affect draft status or signing significantly on its own. For stars, it can affects what is offered.

              • Oooof

                Yeah, I still don’t buy it. I see stars getting traded and guys who were never going to get paid not getting paid. If someone’s an awful character, the social media stuff is a symptom, not a cause.

  5. I Beg To Differ

    Texans.

    Resigning Fuller looks less likely with his recent suspension and they need to hit big on the free agent market since they do not have a 1st or 2nd rounder this year.

    Sign Allen Robinson and possibly Curtis Samuel
    Bring improvements along the oline
    Bring in Jacon Hollister or Jordan Reed as backup TE
    Draft defense.

    • Oooof

      Maybe resigning Fuller is more likely with his market possibly taking a hit? I don’t know where they’re getting the money for Robinson and Samuel. No way they’re signing both.

  6. joeyrocafella

    Godwin and Robinson would look great catching passes from Trevor Lawrence for the Jets

  7. chitowninwi

    Best thing that can happen would be the Old out of touch Owners to sell the team!! I went to Notre Dame HS in Niles , I’ll during the mid 70’s, the McCasksky as

  8. chitowninwi

    Well, they were terrible athletes and even dumber in class , George was the worst QB in school history..
    SELL SELL SELL

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