2021 Dynasty Football Profile: James Robinson

by Mike Bonni
2021 Dynasty Football Profile: James Robinson

Welcome to another edition of the 2021 Dynasty Football Profile Series. In this article, I will be going over the Dynasty value of James Robinson.

James Robinson, the undrafted rookie from Illinois State, took the Fantasy world by storm in 2020. He was able to put up 1,070 rush yards, which was tied for the fifth-most in the NFL in 2020.

It looked like his job was safe, but then the Jacksonville Jaguars drafted running back Travis Etienne in the first round.

Uh-oh, what do we do with James Robinson now?

Come check out the 2021 Dynasty Football Profile: James Robinson article to see where he stands.

Originally Posted 7/8

Things changed now that rookie RB Travis Etienne is out with a foot injury!

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2021 Dynasty Football Profile: James Robinson

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Draft Capital/Profile

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James Robinson had an incredible college career at Illinois State. He rushed for 4,444 yards, with 44 touchdowns. Weird, that is a lot of fours. James also added 58 catches for 428 yards and two touchdowns in his four-year career. His senior year, he went bonkers. He rushed for 1,917 yards and 18 touchdowns. James Robinson is near the top of every Illinois State rushing record, including second in rushing yards, touchdowns, and all-purpose yards.

According to playerprofiler.com, James Robinson had a 48.7% (97th percentile) dominator rating. Sheeeesh! All of this production and it didn’t get him anywhere on draft night. That’s a shame.

James Robinson ended up going undrafted. The Jacksonville Jaguars signed him, and the rest? Well, you know the rest. In case you don’t, stay tuned for James Robinson’s 2020 season.

2020 Season

As you know from above, James Robinson went undrafted. He impressed so much early on that they even released Leonard Fournette, thus giving Robinson the full workload. He took this opportunity and ran away with it, putting up numbers nobody could have saw coming.

In 2020, James Robinson rushed for 1,070 yards and seven touchdowns. He also added 49 catches (9th among running backs) on 60 targets (11th) for 344 yards and three touchdowns. This was good enough to place him as the RB7 in 2020 (PPR format). His Fantasy Points Per Game was even better, 17.7 (RB5).

This all sounds great, but there’s some room for concern.

His true yards per carry is only 4.3 (32nd in the league), which could be attributed to a bad offensive line. There are a few other worries I should go over. James Robinson’s big-play ability is questionable, at best. He had a 29% breakaway percentage (34th among backs), only had seven big runs (18th), and a big run rate of 2.9% (48th). This could be why the Jaguars drafted Travis Etienne. He is known for his big-play ability, in college at least.

Obviously, this leads me to the offseason changes the Jaguars made, along with the issues James Robinson will face.

Offseason Changes/Issues

As you know, Travis Etienne was selected in the first round by the Jaguars. This is going to eat into James Robinson’s role significantly. I will go over this a little bit later, but first, I need to go over more of the changes. Urban Meyer is the new coach, Trevor Lawrence is the new quarterback, and they added Marvin Jones Jr. at wide receiver. Quite the offensive overhaul, don’t you say?

Now onto why James Robinson’s value will drop over the course of the next few years, including 2021.

2021 Role

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Originally published 7/8

James Robinson should still be heavily involved in the offense this year. The Jaguars will have a rookie quarterback in 2021 with Trevor Lawrence. This could lead to a more run-heavy offense, which fits Urban Meyers’ coaching style. James Robinson will lose a decent amount of the receiving work to Etienne, which was a big part of Robinson’s game. He was 13th in routes ran (254) and 15th in target share (11.8%) among running backs. Expect both of those to go down.

Currently going as RB33 (middle RB3), it’s possible he out-performs his Average Draft Position. Don’t expect another RB1 season from James Robinson, or even a high-end RB2. He is more of a borderline RB2, high-end RB3. Draft him accordingly in redraft, because you can’t forget Trevor Lawrence can run too. He may take some attempts away from Robinson also.

UPDATE

Travis Etienne is out for the season with a Lisfranc injury. This is terrible news for the Jaguars and Travis Etienne, but for James Robinson, this is huge for his Fantasy value. He was going as a low-end RB2 with Etienne around. James Robinson is now a top-15 RB for the 2021 season. For those who drafted him in drafts, touche. If you still have a few drafts to go, James Robinson should provide excellent value at the RB position.

DO NOT BE AFRAID TO DRAFT JAMES ROBINSON NOW!

His only competition now is Carlos Hyde. James Robinson should eat again this year.

2022 and Beyond (updated)

As of 8/25, James Robinson is currently going as RB33 in Dynasty leagues per Fantasy Data’s ADP. Congratulations to those of you who believed in him prior to Etienne’s injury.


At first, I thought James Robinson would be finding a new home in the next few years. Now, I don’t think that is the case. With Travis Etienne out for the season with a foot injury, James Robinson should be the main back in Jacksonville for the foreseeable future. His Dynasty value should be trending upwards now.

Final Thoughts

  • James Robinson was incredible his rookie year, but there were some hidden scares that the Jaguars must have saw
  • Robinson’s big-play ability is suspect
  • Robinson’s receiving game may suffer, as Travis Etienne excels in pass-catching and big-play ability
  • Unfortunately, should Etienne return healthy, Robinson will lose his role as the starting RB

That is it for the 2021 Dynasty Football Profile: James Robinson. I hope you enjoyed it. Click here for more 2021 Fantasy Football content

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