This Chicago Bears player is primed for a breakout seasonJosh De Lucaon September 13, 2022 at 12:06 pm

Predicting which NFL players are going to break out is a tough job. NFL stars can be found in every round of the draft and at every position. Some break out their rookie seasons, and some take a few years to develop before exploding onto the scene.

The Chicago Bears are a team that has a lot of young talent. From Jaquon Brisker and Kyler Gordon to Braxton Jones, Tevin Jenkins, and Justin Fields, both sides of the ball have great potential.

Don’t get me wrong, all the players mentioned above could all develop into superstars, but none of them caught my eye like Dominique Robinson did this past Sunday in the Bears 19-10 victory over the San Francisco 49ers.

Before this past Sunday, the thought of Domonique Robinson having a breakout season never even crossed my mind. With established veterans like Robert Quinn, Al-Quadin Muhammad and Trevis Gipson already locked into the rotation, it was hard to predict how many snaps Robinson would play, if any.

As a day three pick out of Miami (OH), nobody would have thought twice if Robinson didn’t see any action, as many fans and analysts expected Robinson to need to be developed before actually making an impact on Sundays.

We couldn’t have been more wrong. In the first week of his rookie season, Dominique Robinson played 28 defensive snaps, which was good for 41% of all defensive snaps. In fact, he actually “out snapped” Trevis Gipson, who had 7 sacks last season.

As a rotational pass rusher, Robinson recorded 7 tackles (5 solo), 1.5 sacks (led team), and 2 QB hits. These are the weekly numbers you’d expect a star defensive end to put up, much less a 5th round rookie playing less than half of the teams defensive snaps in his first career NFL game.

Not to mention that the 49ers offensive line is regarded as one of the best in the NFL, with tackles Trent Williams and Mike McGlinchey, two of the most well-respected in the league.

One thing that came as a surprise was Robinson’s ability to swiftly transition from speed to power, or vice versa. Robinson was known for his speed rush throughout college, but NFL scouts and executives knew he would need to add power moves to his arsenal if he wanted to succeed at the next level.

Robinson seemed to do just that this offseason, as he looked fluid out on the field Sunday, using his length and speed to set up his power moves. A perfect example of this was on Robinson’s first career sack. Robinson used his speed to get the veteran McGlinchey off balance, and then he quickly transitioned to an inside power move to win inside and sack Trey Lance.

Sunday was a giant step in the right direction for Dominique Robinson, but I don’t think he is done making strides yet. With how he performed on Sunday, I would expect a snap count increase heading into week 2, as the Bears travel to Lambeau Field to face off against the Green Bay Packers.

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