After playing on the franchise tag in 2021, what are the potential landing spots for Chicago Bears WR Allen Robinson as a potential free agent this offseason? Let’s take a look at the potential value that Robinson could command as a free agent and which teams might be in play for Chicago’s wideout.
Allen Robinson Landing Spots
The 2021 season has underlined the nightmare that every NFL player has when they get franchise tagged. Heading into the last offseason, Robinson was coming off back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons with 200 receptions on 305 targets. He was expected to be the most in-demand of the receiving options as a free agent.
Unfortunately, the 2021 season has been a disaster. Injuries have restricted Robinson, and he has just 3.3 receptions and 37.7 yards per game entering Week 14. The question is what impact that might have on his market value. Coming off a major injury in 2017, Robinson still commanded $42 million over three years from the Bears.
Entering Week 14, Spotrac has Robinson projected for a four-year, $16.5 million per year contract. They used comparisons with Robert Woods, Keenan Allen, DeAndre Hopkins, and Tyler Lockett to set that baseline, who were all a similar age to Robinson when they signed their deals.
If Robinson can command $16.5 million per year, that will limit the teams looking to sign him. However, we also saw a sticky market for WRs last offseason, so there is no certainty a market will emerge of that size. Robinson also has the rest of the season to increase his potential value. Let’s take a look at some of those potential landing spots for Robinson.
Could the New England Patriots head back into the WR market this offseason?
The Patriots were extremely active in the WR market last offseason. However, they arguably never actually got themselves a true No. 1 type receiver. Nelson Agholor has caught fewer than 60% of his targets, and N’Keal Harry continues to struggle.
They have had bright spots in Kendrick Bourne and Jakobi Meyers. Still, neither of them is the true WR1 type that Robinson can offer. This would be an intriguing potential landing spot for the current Bears WR, despiting having only $27 million in projected cap space. With other areas to address and plenty of high-cost weapons on offense, would New England be willing to invest in the position further?
Robinson could be a fantastic No. 1 target for Tua Tagovailoa in Miami
The thought of Robinson in South Florida with the Miami Dolphins is fun. A combination of Robinson with current rookie WR Jaylen Waddle would instantly upgrade this passing offense. The experiment with DeVante Parker and Preston Williams has not worked, while the money spent on Will Fuller was a bust this year.
The injury concerns in 2021 could limit the investment the Dolphins are willing to make. Over the past few years, Miami has experienced the frustrations that injuries to the WR corps can cause the offense. Salary cap space certainly will not be an issue with a projected $77 million, but there are other needs to address on both sides of the ball as well.
Would Robinson head back down to Jacksonville this offseason?
Robinson’s former team, the Jacksonville Jaguars, are in desperate need of a No. 1 weapon for their rookie QB. They lost DJ Chark to an ugly injury this season, and he is a free agent in 2022. Marvin Jones and Laviska Shenault Jr. are both good weapons, but neither is a focus-of-the-offense type of receiver.
Robinson’s departure from Jacksonville was as much due to the concerns over his injury as anything. Therefore, he might be willing to head back to the team where he had 22 touchdowns through three seasons. The Jaguars certainly have the money to spend, but could the stories of dysfunction be enough to make Robinson dubious about a return?
The Cleveland Browns could be in the market for a star WR
This could be the year that the Cleveland Browns go from a lead receiving pair of Odell Beckham Jr. and Jarvis Landry to Donovan Peoples-Jones and Anthony Schwartz. Beckham is gone, Rashard Higgins is a free agent in 2022, and Landry could be released with little in the way of dead money.
Even if Landry does remain, the Browns could still be an intriguing landing spot for Robinson. The passing offense desperately needs a focal point that can dominate opposing defensive backs. In Peoples-Jones and Schwartz, they have game-breaking options but no clear leader of the receiving corps. Robinson would instantly become that and help the talent level of the offense close the gap to the defense.
Could Robinson help take the Colts’ offense to a new level?
There might not be a more intriguing potential landing spot for Robinson than Indianapolis. While Michael Pittman has emerged as a force in 2021, they still need another high-level WR to help command this offense. T.Y. Hilton’s best days are behind him, and it might be too early for Pittman to lead the receiving corps completely.
In 2021, the offense has relied heavily on the talents of Jonathan Taylor. If they want to strike a better balance, Robinson could help them achieve that. The thought of a rushing offense led by Taylor and a passing attack with Robinson and Pittman will strike fear into opposing defensive coordinators.