Geaux Time: The Arrival of Khiry Robinson


Unless you’re an avid reader of DLF, have season tickets to either West Texas A&M or Blinn College, or really follow the New Orleans Saints, you likely don’t know too much about running back Khiry Robinson. We’ve been talking about Robinson in the DLF Forum for the better part of a year, mostly after we posted this article on him last off-season. With the imminent departure of Darren Sproles and the possibility of Pierre Thomas being jettisoned as well, it’s time everyone learns more about the young runner because he may just be thrust into an extremely prominent role with New Orleans next season.

Robinson attended Belton High School in Texas and was an All-District and All-Centex selection for the Tigers. In addition to being a star football player, he was also an exceptional track athlete as he one the District 13-5A title in both the long and triple jump – it’s that kind of lower body explosiveness that helped him get discovered.

He moved on to Blinn Junior College and graduated after playing both running back and strong safety for the football team, becoming a Junior College All-Conference selection as he helped lead the team to a National Title in the NJCAA title game with none other than Cam Newton at the helm. Keep in mind he was named All-Conference as a Safety, which shows you just what kind of an athlete he may be. After graduating from Blinn College, Robinson was a great player for West Texas A&M in 2011 as he produced 103 carries for 669 yards and 11 touchdowns. He also caught 22 passes for 182 yards and two more scores.

The best was yet to come.

In 2012, Robinson was the Lone Star Conference Offensive Back of the year after he posted 1,654 rushing yards on 247 carries (good for an average of 6.7 yards per carry), added 430 receiving yards on 38 catches and scored a total of 19 touchdowns. Robinson is listed at 6’0″ and 220 pounds, but is probably closer to 5’10” or so. His measurements from his Pro Day last year weren’t anything spectacular. In fact, most running backs who run a 4.6 or 4.7 forty aren’t exactly found in demand. However, it was his strength and explosiveness in games that got him noticed at a whole different level as the Saints signed Robinson last May as an undrafted free agent to compete for a roster spot, which he actually won after a sparkling preseason where he ran for 228 yards on 49 carries for New Orleans.

Last year was a bit of a redshirt season at the beginning, but Robinson started to emerge late. On the season, he posted 224 yards on 54 carries. What dynasty league owners should note is Robinson was trusted even more in the critical postseason as he recorded 102 yards on 21 carries, including a 57-yard effort with a touchdown against the Seahawks in the Divisional Round. In case you haven’t noticed, Seattle is pretty good defensively. Robinson didn’t anything in the passing game during the season, but that may not mean he can’t. He also doesn’t have the look of a prototypical third down back, but he has been productive when given the chance and that just has to account for something right now. When you watch Robinson play, you see someone who has the ability to break tackles and finish off runs – perfect for Sean Payton.

The off-season has been pretty exciting for Robinson. With the Saints looking to unload not only Darren Sproles, but Pierre Thomas as well, the depth chart includes only Robinson and Mark Ingram as truly viable options. It’s obvious the Saints trust Robinson as he led the team in carries in their final game. With Ingram still not living up to his potential, it’s quite possible Robinson could lead the Saints backfield in touches next season. It’s hard to imagine, but in a best case scenario (which may very well be a realistic one), Robinson could be the better part of a two-headed committee with Ingram. Bill Parcells recently compared Robinson to Curtis Martin and that alone should raise some eyebrows of dynasty owners. While nobody can reasonably expect Robinson to carve out a Hall of Fame career like Martin, any player with a skill set that can be compared to the former New York and New England star needs to be recognized.

If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it 1,000 times – this is the single worst time for a dynasty owner to acquire a running back. After all, the Saints could add another back during free agency and/or the upcoming draft to make this exercise in “potential” a useless waste of time. However, the chance of having the key cog in this high octane offense is worthy of taking a risk to acquire Robinson, especially if his owners are sleepwalking and you can get him as a sneaky “throw in” to a larger deal. There are players who emerge every season and it’s up to us to read those tea leaves. Right now, Earl Gray says find a way to pick up Robinson in your leagues.


Ken Kelly

Ken Kelly

Senior Partner - Executive Editor at DynastyLeagueFootball
Ken is a corporate trainer by day an a tireless editor of dynasty content by night. His passion for the World Champion Seattle Seahawks is second only to his love of fantasy football and the dynasty format.

Ken is on Twitter at DLF_KenK
Ken Kelly

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  1. Jason

    March 9, 2014 at 5:27 am

    Fantasy wise, Where would you draft Khiry amongst this year’s rookie class?

    • Ken Kelly

      March 9, 2014 at 8:54 am

      Way too early to tell. Skill-wise, he fits in. However, his situation is in total flux. If the Saints don’t bring in another running back via free agency or the draft, I could see Robinson be taken late in the first or early in the second round (more likely) in rookie drafts.

  2. SJ

    March 9, 2014 at 6:52 am

    I have a hard time seeing Robinson get the bulk of the touches in the Saints backfield this year. At best hes 33%,given that Payton’s always shared catches and carries between multiple backs, which makes it hard to get excited at all. This backfield lacks long-term potential and consistency.

    Ive seen Robinson as another “finisher” RB, in the same capacity Ivory and Ingram were in 2012 and 2013 when healthy. Ingrams roll may grow, or it may not and he’d then be the “closer” again. But either way, its way too soon to predict. I would be more excited about Robinson if he had anything of a track record. he did look nice on the at highlight run against SEA, but that’s one game. And I don’t know if he can catch the ball well, either. Way too risky for me to buy into given the lack of pedigree. Need to see more, and I think the Saints will too by bringing in competition. It makes a nice story so far.

    • Ken Kelly

      March 9, 2014 at 8:56 am

      Yeah, you could very well be right. To me, he’s a possible cheap pickup at the moment. If he can capitalize on an opportunity, we could have something. If he can be acquired on the cheap for a late round rookie pick or as part of a bigger trade, he’s just a player I’d have a lot of interest in at the moment.

      • Dave

        March 9, 2014 at 10:58 am

        Unfortunately, the late round pick that one might expect to use to acquire Robinson is no longer an option. Most want a mid-second, which is too expensive for all the reasons SJ mentioned. I’ve seen one guy insisting on a late 1st to move him.

  3. Chris in Chuck

    March 9, 2014 at 7:42 am

    Great article.
    Just checked league rosters and see he is owned in my main league…
    Why didn’t I pounce when DLF mentioned him so far ahead of the curve?

    Thanks, DLF.

    • esloan35

      March 9, 2014 at 7:54 am

      Lets not forget this was one game against the Raiders D. I still think Ingram has the potential to be the main back with Khiry giving him some relief as needed. Ingram has been running angry and I think he has something to prove. But it was a nice tape against a bad team.

      • Chris in Chuck

        March 9, 2014 at 10:45 am

        You’re right, of course. Khiry hasn’t proven anything yet. But as my RB9 he’d be a lot better gamble than Mike Gillislee who is currently on my roster.

        Gillislee was a late-season add to CYA since I own Lamar Miller.

  4. Peter

    March 9, 2014 at 8:33 am

    I had him on my roster, then I dropped him when we had to make roster cuts. I also have some 10 draft picks coming up and I’ll just load up on almost any RB in this class instead of Khiry taking up a spot.

  5. alden

    March 9, 2014 at 8:38 am

    Nice story ken. Good insight on a player to watch as things unfold in New Orleans.

  6. ariakis73

    March 9, 2014 at 8:59 am

    I had him on my roster since last season with offseason offers increasing from thinly hidden throw-in offers to a 2nd rounder yesterday. With the Rotoworld blurb I replied to that owner (he has Ingram) and suggested in this rookie class he’d be in the range of any RB I could draft after the elite WR’s are gone. He soon after sent 1.08/2nd next year and I no longer have Robinson. Pretty sure that’s a nice sell-high story but if he indeed goes on to start and excel I may actually regret it.

    • Paul

      March 9, 2014 at 9:09 am

      Well done. Trades like that are a felony in some states!

    • SJ

      March 9, 2014 at 8:08 pm

      Yes I think that’s hard to argue as not being a good trade.

      Unless Robinson becomes a steady RB2 over the next 2 years, either the 1.08 or possibly the second rounder could lead to more value or a more productive player

  7. BigD

    March 9, 2014 at 9:31 am

    personally I think the saints are going to do a lot like Gbay did last year and try to rely on the run alittle more. before last year, the run was non-exsistant in Gbay and they had a suspect line. they were forced to use lacy when Rodgers went down and it worked. I think the saints feel a strong run game would help brees, and if he would go down it would add that demention to them as well. ingram is a rb i’m targeting this year in the middle to late rounds and robinson would be a great late round draft capper and handcuff. I still feel ingram is the rb to own from the saints though, and will finally live up to his expectations. it is hard for rbs like ingram to flourish in a pass first offense. we’ve seen it with Richardson, ingram, and the same would have happened to lacy if he would not have been forced to duty? ironically they are all Alabama rbs?

  8. bettendorfjordan1

    March 9, 2014 at 6:48 pm

    I flipped Robinson and 3.08 for 1.09. I feel like, as the article somewhat alluded to, his situation is in a lot of flux right now with the Saints possibly adding a running back through FA or draft or maybe they keep PThomas somehow. At any rate, I feel like I got good value for a guy who hasn’t done a lot yet and I picked up off waivers a few weeks ago.

    • Ken Kelly

      March 9, 2014 at 6:51 pm

      Yeah, that’s taking advantage of the situation in the opposite way. I like that move.

  9. pvillebiker

    March 9, 2014 at 7:58 pm

    It’s way too early to anoint Khiry as a sure thing. The saint’s situation is very fluid right now, as they have not yet released Sproles or Thomas, but both are supposedly imminent.

    To me, the upside of Khiry is huge, but it requires a lot of things to fall just right. The first big hurdle is Sproles & Thomas actually leave, and the Saints don’t bring in another vet RB or burn a high draft pick on RB (can’t imagine they would). Clearing that hurdle would be huge for Robinson’s upside.

    Another scintillating development today, New Orleans paper predicting the Saints move to a more balanced, ball-control attack. That would be custom made for an Ingram/Khiry combo.

    Finally, I think Ingram will be given every opportunity to be the lead dog in that attack. I also do not believe he will successfully fend of the eventual ascension of Khiry. If that happens, Khiry could have strong RB1 value. Oh yeah, he can catch the ball as well as pointed out above. Don’t be fooled just because that’s not how he was developed / used this year.

    I’m picked Khiry up early in the year based on the DLF piece and still have him. The more I learn about him, the better I like him. And if he doesn’t hit, no big loss!


  10. Cy23

    March 10, 2014 at 12:39 pm

    I have Darren Sproles on a team with a 5 RB limit. (Current roster: Reggie Bush, Martin, David Wilson, Stewart, Sproles, Ingram, Rashad Jennings… with Martin/Wilson on IR until July)

    I picked Ingram up at the end of the season just in case. At this point, I am definitely keeping:
    Bush/Martin/Wilson (and probably Stewart, one last time)
    Who would you keep from Sproles, Ingram or Jennings?

  11. slick

    March 10, 2014 at 2:12 pm

    that’s easy…check the DLF rankings!
    coming in at #35 – sproles!

    now of course in light of the latest news you may want to see where he lands…but odds are good that if someone picks him up, they see him as a key piece to push them forward – broncos/pats anyone??!!!

    • pvillebiker

      March 10, 2014 at 6:08 pm

      NFL network this evening mentioned in passing the possibility of Sproles going to the Vikings for potential 3rd down scat back. Interesting idea, but I think Sproles productivity is likely on the decline.

  12. bigefat

    March 10, 2014 at 5:27 pm

    I think the ONE hitch in Khiry not being the “bell cow” (not a Fantasy RB1, but the Saints RB1) is experience. I don’t see Ingram as much of a threat. He’s been terrible so far in his career. The argument that Khiry has only done it one or two games is kinda BS as it’s not like Ingram has a season or two of solid production on his resume. I mean does everyone forget that for all of Ingram’s career, Sproles has been the back to own (or even Pierre Thomas and Chris Ivory)! I see too many paople are still holding out hope their first round rookie pick will somehow turn it around so we don’t feel like idiots for drafting the guy! I don’t know if Khiry sets the world on fire but, I’d much rather roll the dice with him than the “proven” non-commodity that is Ingram!

    • Cy23

      March 11, 2014 at 7:14 am

      You really can’t compare Ingram to Sproles as a negative for Ingram. The NO offense was built around passing and Sproles was heavily involved.

      If they are changing their offense, it will help both Khiry and Ingram. So the question is who is the better RB NOW, not based on past results.

      I’ll agree that some people are holding out hope for their previous first round bust, but at the same time– who considered Moreno or Mathews a bust at the beginning of last year? Look what they did in the right situation.

  13. Nick

    March 12, 2014 at 8:44 am

    The hype train sure was short lived…
    Ian Rapoport @RapSheet
    Pierre Thomas has signed a two-year extension to remain with the #Saints, per @CLamontSmith said.

    Hopefully people weren’t trading first round picks for Khiry… He’s going to remain part of the 3, maybe even 4 after the draft, headed monster that is the Saints RBBC

    • SJ

      March 12, 2014 at 9:04 am

      Yea, pretty crazy situation with that news. I alawys try to warn myself – in bad RB situations, its good not to elevate expectations on any one player, at any one time. NO is a bad RB situation because they split workload going back to when Peyton arrived, and things can change quickly. Thats just how it is there, unfortunately.

    • SJ

      March 12, 2014 at 9:07 am

      Looking back on the comments on here, those guys who flipped Robinson for more via trades are absolute genious IMO. Really cool stuff.

  14. devildawgz

    March 15, 2014 at 9:55 am

    Had Robinson on my roster last year and dropped him for a Qb (McGloin). Now I have dropped him too. Hoping I can grab get him back in the draft later this year. Feeling dumb.

  15. SteelTown

    April 8, 2014 at 6:49 am

    I’m thinking I enjoy all the hype on Robinson and try and flip him for something else. Someone in my league is offering me Percy Harvin for him.. I think I have to!

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