Washington Commanders rookie running back Brian Robinson Jr made headlines on October 13, when he made his maiden NFL start against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field on Thursday Night Football. Robinson made his NFL debut in Week 5 against the Tennessee Titans, only six weeks after he was shot twice in an attempted robbery during the preseason.
The 23-year-old running back’s comeback story has been one of the most inspiring in the NFL in recent years. He was shot in his leg both times in the attempted robbery, however, recuperated in less than two months to play in a professional football game.
After news of his sustaining gunshot wounds emerged, Robinson said it was likely the lowest point in his life so far.
“My passion for this game runs so deep. I never thought I’d be in a situation where I had to question or be questioned if I would be able to return back to playing football”, he said.
Robinson registered 9 carries for 22 yards in his NFL debut against the Titans, however, the Commanders lost the game 21-17. In his maiden NFL start against the Bears, he has so far registered 7 carries for 19 yards in two quarters with one minute left on the clock.
The running back played college football for the University of Alabama and showed a never back down mentality from his earlier days. This helped him to be picked by the Washington Commanders in the third round of the 2022 NFL draft.
People who are familiar with Robinson feel that there are no surprises behind him bouncing back from gunshot injuries so soon. Strong will and defiance are the highlights of his character and his brush with adversity while beating the odds in his life to continue playing football is what makes him different from many of us.
He was part of an Alabama locker room with several future NFL draft picks, such as Bo Scarbrough, Damien Harris, Josh Jacobs and Najee Harris. However, he waited patiently for his chance, registering 1,343 yards and 14 touchdowns in his senior year.
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While he looked set to dethrone Gibson as the starting running back, the horrific injury attempt set his plans back. But support from his teammates and coaches has been positive at the Commanders, while the fact that the bullet which was shot at his right knee, went clean through without damaging bones or ligaments, added to it.
“Once the doctors told me I’d be able to play ball again my mind automatically clicked into what I needed to do to get myself back on the football field,” he said at the time.
“This is just another situation where I had to be stronger than what I was up against,” he added.