Steelers are making a foolish decision with Allen Robinson II

Omar, please listen to reason; Allen Robinson has to go.

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Baltimore Ravens v Pittsburgh Steelers / Joe Sargent/GettyImages

I would have thought that releasing Allen Robinson II would have been the easiest move the Pittsburgh Steelers could have made this year. When the team announced their first wave of roster moves in 2024, I was surprised to see that Robinson wasn't immediately joining Mitch Trubisky, Chukwuma Okorafor, and Pressley Harvin III in free agency.

That was weeks ago, and Steelers fans are starting to panic. Why hasn't Robinson been released yet? Your guess is as good as mine.

With less than a week until the start of free agency, it's baffling that Robinson remains on the Steelers roster. The veteran wide receiver made almost zero impact in Pittsburgh last year, and his $11.9 million cap number for the 2024 season is comically high.

By releasing the underwhelming veteran receiver, the Steelers would instantly save $10 million -- a huge chunk of money that they could spend to retool their roster in free agency.

But cutting Robinson might not be part of the plan.

According to a recent report from Chris Halicke of DK Pittsburgh Sports, the Steelers want Robinson back and Robinson wants to stay in Pittsburgh. The kicker is trying to get him back on a reduced salary. Personally, I think this would be a huge mistake on the part of Omar Khan and Mike Tomlin.

Steelers need a massive upgrade at the WR3 position

There's no question that Pittsburgh's coaching staff loves Allen Robinson's leadership and attitude, but it's his willingness as a blocker that has likely kept him around this long. In a 2023 season in which we witnessed a lack of effort from George Pickens and Diontae Johnson as blockers, Robinson was just the opposite.

But a willingness to block doesn't make him an exceptional blocker from the receiver position. According to Pro Football Focus, Robinson earned a 57.8 run-block grade and a 61.3 pass-block grade last season.

I can tell you for certain that his ability as a blocker isn't worth the trade-off. Robinson was awful as a receiver last year -- earning just 280 yards on 49 targets despite being credited with 17 starts as the team's primary slot receiver. This equates to a career-low 5.7 yards per target and a dismal 75.2 passer rating when targeted.

If you put on his film from 2023, you'll see a receiver who lacks quickness, speed, and explosion. Not only did Robinson struggle to separate from his defender in 2023, but he also did almost nothing when it came to yards after the catch -- earning just 2.0 YAC per reception.

On top of all of this, Robinson does not play special teams. He has recorded just 26 special teams snaps in 10 NFL seasons. This is an indicator that the Steelers view him as a third wide receiver on the team. Depth options must have the ability to play special teams, and Robinson can not help in this regard.

Quite frankly, the thought of trying to keep Allen Robinson II on the Steelers roster in 2024 (even if his salary is reduced) is foolish. Robinson offered this team almost nothing in 2023, and there is no reason to believe he will suddenly be better when he turns 31 years old before the season.

It's little decisions like this that will cause fans to lose faith in Omar Khan. Cutting a bad receiver like Allen Robinson would save the Pittsburgh Steelers $10 million. There's no way to justify keeping him around in 2024.

All stats and snap counts courtesy of Pro Football Reference.

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