Looking back on it, second-year tight end Adrien Robinson didn't know what he didn't know a year ago when he was a confused rookie who missed OTAs and mini-camp due to his class at Cincinnati not graduating until late June.
Robinson said Wednesday morning that, going through OTAs and mini-camp with the New York Giants for the first time, he can see what he missed.
"We start from Day 1 where to line up where to line up on the formations right and left so it’s really the full offense install. I thinking ‘wow, I did miss a lot last year’ and I realize that this year. It’s helped me a lot."
Robinson's improved play drew praise recently from tight ends coach Mike Pope.
"Adrien Robinson appears to have gone into the Land of the Believers and yes he has been making some good progress. He is understanding assignment-wise," Pope said. "Now we have to get him to adjust to the way the defense is playing on each particular play and to make the best decisions based on how the defense is playing. But he is running well and he has his weight down some. The quarterback is starting to find him. He is hard to miss - he is the tallest tree in the forest out there. So he is a good target. But we are more than mildly pleased with the progress that he has made from an assignment standpoint."
Robinson, drafted in the fourth round in 2012, admitted that this year is "a lot better than last year."
"One of the reasons that they're saying so many good things is I feel like I've come a long way from last year as far as understanding the offense and assignments. I think that's what impressed them the most," Robinson said.
"It's still early. We've still got camp and preseason so I just want to keep getting better."
Robinson admitted that the 2012 season, during which he played only two snaps and was inactive most Sundays was "a little frustrating."
"At the same time I spoke with Coach Pope. He would tell me to just learn as much as I can, soak up as much information as I could," Robinson said. "I traveled to all the games, I got to see basically how to be a professional Even though I didn't get a lot of snaps I learned a lot last year."
The tight end position has been a revolving door for the Giants in recent seasons. From Kevin Boss to Jake Ballard to Martellus Bennett and now to Brandon Myers, it seems like the Giants have been, for the most part, a one-and-done team at that spot in recent seasons.
Could the player GM Jerry Reese described as "the JPP of tight ends" when he drafted him eventually put an end to that merry-go-round? Possibly, if he continues to develop. For now, though, the 6-foot-4, 275-pound Robinson is just hoping to prove he deserves a chance to play.
"I feel like now that I know the offense so much better than last year and I'm understanding things I think I'll definitely be on the field," Robinson said. "I was drafted, so I feel like they want me here to make plays."
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