Robinson set career highs in snaps (20), carries (eight), and rushing yards (33) in the Jaguars' 44-17 loss to the Indianapolis Colts at EverBank Field on Sunday and coach Gus Bradley said he sees Robinson’s role expanding even further as the season progresses.
"I think that Denard has really showed to us during the last three weeks that he’s earned the opportunity to get more reps," Bradley said. "We made a conscious decision this past week to get him more opportunities and he did a pretty good job so that will continue."
Robinson has played 34 snaps this season, which is more than half of the 53 snaps he played as a rookie in 2013. He was on the field so little because of ball security issues, which turned out to be the result of nerve damage in his right hand that he suffered during his final season at Michigan. The biggest impact Robinson made as a rookie was fumbling the ball through the end zone against Buffalo.
Robinson went through organized team activities and the three-day minicamp in the spring and dropped just one pass and he had no issues with ball security during training camp and the preseason. He has been productive on the field so far this season, rushing for 41 yards on 11 carries and catching three passes for 17 yards in limited action.
"I’ve still got to do some work," Robinson said. "I think I can do better. I had a couple plays where I could try to change and a couple runs I should have made [against Indianapolis].
"I feel like I can be a playmaker. I’ve just got to get used to getting back in the groove. Last year I got out of the groove a little bit. I had a couple chances but I didn’t make the most of it. This year I’ve got to take advantage of it."
The Jaguars’ run game has been a struggle this season, totaling just 89 yards in the first two games. Robinson had just three carries in those two games. The Jaguars rushed for 105 yards against the Colts.
"We’ve got to establish the run game here," Robinson said. "Mojo [Maurice Jones-Drew] was one of the guys that established the run game the years before this and we need to establish one this year. We’ve got to find our identity this year."
It looks like Robinson is going to be a significant part of it.