The Detroit Lions haven’t been linked to many local college products so far in this draft cycle but there was one player they seemed to pay close attention to at the Senior Bowl. Here’s who he is:
Trenton Robinson, S, Michigan State
Weight: 195 lbs
40-Yard Dash: 4.52 sec
Bench Press: 15 reps
Vertical Jump: 35″
Broad Jump: 125″
20 Yrd Shuttle: 4.15 sec
PROS: Making plays again in senior season, compact build, versatility, durable kid, nose for the ball, speed, should contribute on special teams
CONS: Height, needs true position, not an elite athlete, but a good one
The Lions situation at safety is not unlike their situation at cornerback. They have bodies on the roster but it is an area they can stand to improve. Louis Delmas had the look of a star in the making but didn’t take the step forward that many expected in 2011. He remains more interested in laying a big hit than becoming a solid tackler by consistently wrapping up ball carriers and he doesn’t have an interception since his rookie year. Amari Spievey has been maddeningly inconsistent, Erik Coleman is just there for depth and John Wendling’s role is on special teams. Delmas and Spievey are still early enough in their careers that they shouldn’t be looked at as finished products but that doesn’t mean the Lions can’t draft a safety if the see a player with the potential to make a push for playing time if the team’s safety play doesn’t improve.
Is Trenton Robinson that guy? Michigan State fans will surely have a stronger opinion than most since they saw him for three years as a starter. He has a lot of cornerback qualities but is better suited as a safety due to his physicality and lack of fluidity in coverage. The scouting report on the CBS Sports scouting report suggests that a team that plays primarily zone coverage could try him as a corner. Lions corners will spend most of their time in man coverage but their safeties play a lot of two-deep coverage – a much better situation for Robinson.
The Lions value versatility and that is perhaps Trenton Robinson’s best trait. Nothing he does will be described as elite but he can do a lot of things well. His cornerback-like skills make him a candidate to line up in a variety of locations and he shows a willingness to bring down bigger backs in run support.
Various draft websites are in agreement that the fourth round is the likely spot for Robinson to come off the board.
Here are some video clips of his pro day workout with a short interview at the end: