Chop Robinson Brings Untapped Potential To The NFL

Chop Robinson has been a force to be reckoned with everywhere he’s gone. He has blossomed into a potential first-round draft pick thanks to his athletic ability and has been a unique talent since high school.

Robinson played high school football at Quince Orchard High School in Gaithersburg, Maryland. He was part of a long list of highly-rated high school prospects from the DMV as the five-star was ranked the No. 1 overall player in the state, the No. 2 edge rusher, and the No. 22 player in the country in the Class of 2021, according to 247Sports’ Composite rankings.

College football’s elite programs were after Robinson, including Penn State, Alabama, Ohio State, and Michigan, however, Robinson committed to in-state Maryland, which is only about a half-hour drive from Quince Orchard.

Robinson’s statistics weren’t eye-popping, but he made an immediate impact as a true freshman in College Park. He made 19 total tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss, and two sacks over eight appearances. His best game was against Kent State when he registered four total tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss, and a sack. His other sack was in the Pinstripe Bowl against Virginia Tech.

On March 28, 2022, Robinson entered the transfer portal. A weeks-long search concluded with him committing to Penn State on April 12.

Robinson’s arrival gave then-first-year defensive coordinator Manny Diaz’s defense a massive boost. In addition to Robinson, the defensive line was loaded with the likes of Adisa Isaac, PJ Mustipher, and Nick Tarburton, to name a few.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Robinson’s production skyrocketed during his first season in Happy Valley. Over 12 appearances, he made 26 total tackles, 10 sacks, 5.5 tackles for loss, one forced fumble, a fumble recovery, and two pass breakups.

Despite the Nittany Lions suffering an ugly loss at Michigan, Robinson played his best game of the season. He had five total tackles, a tackle for loss, and a pass breakup. His only two-sack game was against the Terrapins three games later.

Robinson continued to impress in his third season. He missed two games after suffering an injury at Ohio State, but he still made an impact with 15 total tackles, 7.5 tackles for loss, four sacks, two forced fumbles, one fumble recovery, and a pass breakup.

Robinson recorded another two-sack game against UMass, but his five total tackles against Rutgers were his most of the season. He opted out of the 2023 Peach Bowl to prepare for the 2024 NFL Draft, which he declared for on December 5.

The 6’3″, 254-pounder enters the draft with significant praise. He has been compared to Micah Parsons and Myles Garrett because of his athleticism by NFL analyst Lance Zierlein.

“He’s ultra-twitchy with the explosiveness to get on top of blockers and overwhelm them in an instant,” Zierlein said of Robinson. “However, he will need to level up his hand skills and attack angles to reach his potential against NFL tackles. Robinson’s electric athletic traits alone should give him a floor as a good NFL starter. If he crafts a rush approach and learns to string moves/counters together, he could reach his ceiling as a destructive force capable of forcing teams to game plan around him.”

Robinson ran a 4.48 40-yard dash, had a 1.54 10-yard split, jumped a 34.5″ vertical, and a 10’8″ broad jump at the NFL Combine, which only adds more evidence of his athleticism. He was given an 83 overall grade, which ranked fourth among edge rushers.

Robinson is expected to be drafted somewhere late in the first round. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who currently hold the No. 26 overall pick, are frequently projected to land Robinson in mock drafts. The Miami Dolphins, who hold the No. 21 overall pick, and the Philadelphia Eagles, who possess the No. 23 overall pick, are also teams that he has been projected to be selected by as they both have needs at edge rusher.

The 2024 NFL Draft begins at 8 p.m. on Thursday, April 25, in Detroit, Michigan. It will be televised on ABC, ESPN, and NFL Network.

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About the Author

Nolan Wick

Nolan is a third-year journalism major from Silver Spring, Maryland, which means he's an avid fan of all D.C. sports teams. If Nolan isn't writing about or watching sports, you can probably find him listening to all sorts of music or traveling. To keep up with Nolan, you can follow him on Twitter @nolan_wick or email him at [email protected].

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