Bears' Battery - Trubisky and Robinson
Allen Robinson is as elite as Mitch Trubisky is competent.
We were pouring the plaster of the 2020 season at quarterback for the Chicago Bears. Speculation seemed to lean towards Trubisky being elsewhere next year. In recent weeks, that narrative has died entirely. Just as it began to solidify, Mitch Trubisky has strung together a decent 5 game stretch.
It’s easy to make him a punching bag but I should note that my 2 favourite factors were out of Trubisky’s control: Deshaun Watson and Patrick Mahomes being drafted afterwards and Chicago unnecessarily trading up with the 49ers.
For fantasy owners, Trubisky is coming around the mountain. He’s delivered four performances of 19 or more fantasy in points in the last 5 games. The sign of encouragement is in regards to the fantasy points derived from rushing. It has returned over the past three weeks in a big way. Before week 12, Trubisky had zero games with 20 rushing yards. He was also held without a rushing touchdown through nine games played.
Over the past four weeks, Trubisky has set new season highs in rushing attempts and rushing yards. More Importantly he has his first two rushing scores of 2019. We need Trubisky to be dangerous on land and through the air.
If we zoom out on Mitch Trubisky it looks frustrating for owners. In a season with an abundance of boom or bust play at the quarterback position, Trubisky has the crown among them. He has six games with 19 points or better for fantasy. He also has 6 games with 10 points or less. That is all.
Trubisky has zero games with a score between 11 and 18 fantasy points! 50% of the time he has 19 or more. The other 50% he’s had 10 points or less. The Bears have a lot tied to the success of their quarterback Mitch Trubisky. For dynasty owners, we could be on a terrifying Marcus Mariota-like path in the windy city.
That doesn’t mean Allen Robinson is comparable to Corey Davis! In fact, it illuminates the talent that is Allen Robinson. The truth is Allen Robinson has suffered through below average quarterback play for his entire career.
Fantasy gamers who stood by A-Rob since 2015 have finally been vindicated. Robinson is on pace for a career high in catches while hitting marks in receiving yards and touchdowns we have only seen in that landmark 2015 season.
His status being in doubt over the last 3 seasons has been understandable. However, his truthers have had legs to stand on. In 2017, Allen Robinson was returning from an injury that A-robbed him of his season. The other side of the struggle stemmed from situation. Poor quarterback play factored in and A-Rob was fighting historical data tied to wide receivers changing teams.
If we zoom out on this season as a whole we see Allen Robinson is having a good year. If we zoom in, it looks spectacular. The quarterback play has been as poor as he’s experienced in his career. A low bar, I know.
Allen Robinson has commanded what little there's been from this offense all season. In 12 of 13 games so far, Robinson has over 20% of the Bears target share.Over 23% in 10 games. He’s on pace for over 140 targets and 93 catches. Last season, only 8 wide receivers hit each of those marks. Julio Jones, Davante Adams, Antonio Brown, JuJu Smith Schuster, Deandre Hopkins, Michael Thomas, Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen.
The volume and production have both been there. The high leverage work has been as well. Only a handful of players eclipse 40% of their teams air yards annually. Right now Allen Robinson is flirting with that figure.
Inside the red zone it’s not supernatural that A-Rob is dominating the work in Chicago. The team lacks weapons who excel in that area of the field. Trey Burton’s season-long injury leaves them without an accurate passer near the goal line anyway! (Sorry) But, like his Air Yards, Allen Robinson has one of the highest shares of his team’s red zone work in the league. This extends to inside the 10 yard line as well.
With quarterback play leaving a sour taste in the mouths of fantasy owners, this offseason could facilitate a buying period for Allen Robinson. His abilities are hovering around elite status. His situation isn’t ideal but he’s endured worse.
In 2020 Allen Robinson could be among the league lead in targets, catches, touchdowns, air yards, red zone targets and targets inside the 10 yard line. Each of these goals is attainable for A-Rob. Even absent above-average quarterback play.