Bumpus: Seahawks DE Robinson took advantage of opportunities in camp
The Seahawks have wrapped up training camp and now await cut day on Saturday before shifting focus to preparing for a Week 1 showdown with the Atlanta Falcons.
This has been a training camp and offseason like no other as the COVID-19 pandemic greatly impacted when camp started, how it was conducted and much more in relation to football activities.
But players on the Seahawks and across the league did what they could to make the most of it, and for Seattle, a young player at a key position may have benefited the most from camp this season according to former WSU and Seahawks receiver Michael Bumpus.
Bumpus, who joined 710 ESPN Seattle’s Danny and Gallant for the Blue 42 segment as he does every Friday at 8 a.m., said that fifth-round pick Alton Robinson, the rookie defensive end from Syracuse, was his choice for the Seahawk who benefited the most from this year’s camp.
“This is a guy who wasn’t really on my radar and started making plays,” Bumpus said. ” … As soon as Darrell Taylor went down, you started hearing about this guy a bit more.”
Taylor, a fellow rookie defensive end who the Seahawks selected in the second round, has yet to practice as he recovers from offseason surgery on his shin. The injury may prevent Taylor from appearing in games early in 2020, but in his place, Robinson has done everything expected of him and more and has shown remarkable improvement from his college days with Syracuse to now.
“He’s a prime example of coming (to camp) in shape – he was 15 pounds heavier than he was before, but it was good weight – adding some tools to your toolbox – he was a speed guy and now he’s got some strength in there – and then taking advantage of an opportunity,” Bumpus said. “When the No. 2 pick goes down, you have the opportunity to step in and make an impression, so now, he’s ahead of Darrell Taylor.”
Pass rush was arguably the biggest weakness the Seahawks had in 2019, as the defense racked up just 28 sacks, which was tied for the second-fewest sacks in the NFL. To improve on that number, the Seahawks signed Bruce Irvin and Benson Mayowa, re-signed Jarran Reed and traded up in the second round to secure Taylor before also adding Robinson in the fifth round. Considered an afterthought for 2020, Bumpus said he’s likely earned some playing time once the season begins after forcing people to pay attention to him.
“Alton Robinson coming in and helping this defensive line, that’s an area where everybody says the Hawks need help,” Bumpus said. “They’re focused on Benson Mayowa who had a good camp, they’re focused on Reed, they’re focused on Darrell Taylor, but then here comes this rookie (Robinson) who’s been working out with (former Seahawks defensive end) Cliff Avril, who’s been a silent hard worker getting his reps and making an impression. He’s going to be in the rotation next week when it’s time to play.”
Listen to the full second hour of Friday’s edition of Danny and Gallant at this link or in the player below.