San Francisco 49ers cornerback Rashard Robinson looks like he’s already found himself in a starting role. With the release of veteran Tramaine Brock during the offseason, the secondary room is on the younger side, and Robinson finds himself in a new mentoring role.
Robinson who says he’s come a long way and is much more mature, also says the game has slowed down for him. He’s already imparting some of that knowledge to rookies like Ahkello Witherspoon with whom he spent a bit of time with during OTAs practice. His best piece of advice to the rookies is that “It’s a part of the process. Go out and put your best foot forward, bad plays might happen so you have to have a short memory.”
Robinson is known as a talker on the field, for having swagger. It was on full display after he broke up a Brian Hoyer pass that was intended for Pierre Garcon. He admits it’s part of his game and part of what he does naturally.
Just being a dog on the field, trying to bring the whole energy to the defense and to the team as a whole
Defensive coordinator Robert Saleh referred to Robinson using the same term:
He’s a dog. I like him. He’s made of the right stuff, his attitude, his mindset is unique for a corner.
Defensive backs coach Jeff Hafley was very complimentary of the work Robinson has done during the offseason but still says he is a work in progress.
I think he’s worked a lot on fundamentals. I think he’s gotten stronger. Besides that, I think it’s the same attitude, the same mindset, the same Rashard. I do think fundamentally he’s gotten better, he’s worked at it.
Everything we worked on last year, you can tell he worked on it in the offseason. It’s gotten better whether it’s staying square at the line of scrimmage, foot quickness, transition burst. [He] understands more now how I teach and the way I like to play press and man. I think he’s taken a step. He’s still [got] a ways to go.
Although the 49ers will be using a new defensive scheme this year, the mechanics are still the same. As mentioned by many players, it is more simplistic and allows players to “fly around to the ball more.” Robinson is excited by the prospect of being anle to make more played like the interception he made vs. the Rams last season.
For now, Robinson will continue to speak up more if he sees rookies “lacking,” pulling them to the side to chat if necessary. He will continue to work on himself as he did during the offseason, not only in fundamentals, but also managing to add nearly 15 pounds to his lean frame.
I'm getting close to 190 now so I’m feeling good, I’m ready to go, I’m ready to play.