The Denver Broncos will need to address the running back position group in free agency. They may even need to do that and also draft a runner in April. That’s how unstable the position group is right now.
Continuing our review of potentially available running backs when free agency starts, we have New York Jets running back James Robinson. While he is a restricted free agent, it appears the Jets are unlikely to tender him due to the cost. That means the Broncos could take a look at the fourth-year runner.
Highlighting Robinson’s career to date
Robinson went undrafted in the 2020 NFL Draft and signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars. At 5’9” and 215 pounds, he was able to translate his game at the NFL level with the shiftiness of a smaller player combined with some lower body power.
In his first two seasons, he proved a capable and dangerous back. In 27 starts, he piled up 1837 yards on the ground for 4.6 yards per carry and 15 touchdowns. He also pulled down 80 receptions for 566 yards and three touchdowns as a receiver out of the backfield.
Robinson was well on his way to another strong season as part of a committee in 2022 with 340 yards and three touchdowns in six games. However, when the Jaguars traded Robinson at the deadline to the Jets, his season was derailed. He quickly found himself at odds with the team and inactive for the rest of the season.
Why he makes sense for the Broncos
Frankly, I think Robinson makes a lot of sense if paired with a guy like Latavius Murray. He can carry in between the tackles and catch out of the backfield, so having him on the field wouldn’t key the defense into any obvious tendencies. His production on the field before being traded to the Jets was both consistent and solid. I’d give him a mulligan on the Jets situation.
Getting a strong backfield in place could be very important for the Broncos as they work Javonte Williams back from a rather tough knee injury. While there have been reports that he could be ready Week 1, there are also reports that he could need more time. I’d rather they bring him back slowly and get him to 100%. They can do that if they build out a strong group of running backs to start the season.
Examining Robinson’s free agent market
According to Spotrac, Robinson will be on the cheaper side of things as far as free agent running backs go. They have him at $3.8 million in average annual salary. That is nearly half what a more established runner like Kareem Hunt would bring.
Given the price and the potential pairing with Latavius Murray, I would totally be okay with Robinson coming to Denver. That will give the team the luxury of working Javonte Williams back at whatever pace he needs and still have a pretty dynamic backfield heading into Week 1.
What do you all think? Let’s discuss this in the comments section below.
Should the Broncos try to sign James Robinson?
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