Bears rumors: Despite dealing with poor quarterback play with the Chicago Bears, wide receiver Allen Robinson has put up strong numbers every year. With the Bears unable to figure out their quarterback situation and Robinson set to hit free agency, both sides could be parting ways this offseason.
There were signs of trouble for Robinson’s future in Chicago before the 2020 season began. When the Bears hadn’t opened contract negotiations with the Pro Bowl receiver, there were increasing odds that it would be his last season with the team. The relationship between Robinson and the Bears has spiraled further out of control ever since.
Bears rumors: Allen Robinson expected to leave this offseason
ESPN’s Jeff Dickerson, who covers the Bears, believes Chicago will let Robinson walk in free agency. While both sides have discussed a contract extension, the gap is reportedly too wide to bridge. As a result, with the team’s limited cap space, the Pro Bowl receiver will likely depart in free agency.
Robinson signed with the Bears during the 2018 offseason, signing a three-year contract worth $42 million. He excelled at getting open, routinely finding holes in the secondary and easily creating separation from cornerbacks. However, due to Mitch Trubisky’s poor play, that didn’t always translate to success.
Across 13 games in 2018, Robinson hauled in 55-of-94 targets for 754 receiving yards and a touchdown. After missing three contests the previous season, Robinson started all 16 contests in 2019 and improved on his stats. The 6-foot-2 receiver snagged a career-high 98 receptions, finishing with 1,147 receiving yards and seven touchdowns.
Things haven’t gone as smoothly for Robinson this season. Despite Chicago giving both Nick Foles and Mitch Trubisky opportunities to start, neither quarterback has played well. While the Bears lead the NFL in pass attempts (402), they have the sixth-lowest quarterback rating (81.8), fifth-lowest completion rate (63.2%) and second-worst yards per attempt (6.0).
Robinson has still found a way to make the most of his opportunities. Entering the team’s Week 11 bye, he has 63 receptions for 755 receiving yards and three scores. Even more impressively, per Pro Football Focus, he hasn’t dropped a pass 20-plus yards downfield since 2017. Despite his outstanding hands, size and route-running ability, Robinson ranks 44th in red-zone targets.
The 27-year-old receiver hasn’t hidden his frustrations with the situation. From on-field reactions after countless off-target throws by Foles to requesting a trade, it’s evident that he isn’t happy in Chicago.
Bears rumors: Potential free-agent landing spots for Allen Robinson
Robinson will have a great opportunity to cash in with a lucrative contract this offseason. More importantly, he can sign with a team that has a proven quarterback. Even with the NFL salary cap expected to dip in 2021, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there will be opportunities to get paid and find a better situation.
The Baltimore Ravens and New England Patriots will both be flush with cap space this offseason and need a No. 1 receiver. According to Over the Cap, Baltimore ($30 million) and New England ($63 million) will have enough money to afford Robinson.
If the New York Jets draft Trevor Lawrence, with more than $80 million in projected cap space, they could also be a landing spot. Additionally, the Washington Football Team ($51 million), New York Giants ($23.5 million) and Miami Dolphins ($36 million) could each offer lucrative contracts.
Either way, Robinson will likely land in a much better situation in 2021. Given his age, another option exists for this playmaking receiver.
He could sign a one-year contract at a lower salary, taking less money to play for an elite quarterback on a Super Bowl contender. He would then hit free agency again in 2022, when the salary cap should soar and he’ll be entering his age-29 season. Needless to say, he’ll have plenty of options this offseason.