Commanders’ Brian Robinson Jr. displays on being shot, returning to NFL one 12 months later: ‘I am a warrior’

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By Stacy Connor


It’s been a 12 months since Washington Commanders working again Brian Robinson Jr. went from standout rookie at coaching camp to questioning if he’d ever play soccer once more after struggling two gunshot wounds throughout an tried theft in Washington, D.C. 

The Commanders posted a narrative primarily based off interviews between Robinson and their content material workforce by which the second-year professional mirrored on that second on Aug. 28, 2022 when he thought all was misplaced. 

The piece begins with Robinson saying he couldn’t sleep that first night time within the hospital, as his thoughts was racing. 

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Brian Robinson Jr meets coaches

Brian Robinson Jr. greeted by Commanders coaches. (Washington Commanders)

“I could not assist however really feel disenchanted, as a result of I had labored so exhausting to get up to now in my life,” Robinson stated. “From taking part in highschool soccer in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, to ready my flip to point out what I may do in school and getting the decision from Coach Rivera, I had dreamt about taking part in within the NFL from the primary time I used to be in a position to put that jersey on with my identify on it. I spotted that goals are actual should you put collectively the correct habits and, , you’ve got the correct work ethic.

“Now, that dream was near being accomplished.”

Nonetheless, Robinson was properly conscious that soccer wasn’t on anybody else’s thoughts. His household, buddies, the Commanders and each NFL fan needed to ensure that he was OK. 

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“I knew I used to be fortunate to be alive,” Robinson admitted. “We’re speaking about gunshots. Folks die from gunshots. One shot. Anyplace. It may be within the strangest place in your physique, and you may die from it. So, to take two, there is no manner I can suppose that I am not blessed to make it out of there.”

As soon as medical doctors revealed to Robinson that no structural injury was attributable to his gunshot wounds, the Alabama product stated he was relieved. He knew soccer was nonetheless within the playing cards, and he set to work. 

Robinson detailed having to hop up and down stairs together with his mother’s assist through the course of. He had been shot within the knee and hip after wrestling one of many boys who was making an attempt to rob him. That boy was 16 years previous, whereas the one who shot him was 15. 

Robinson’s mom performed a significant position in his restoration, as a result of the working again admitted he’s normally cussed in relation to asking for assist. 

“My mother knew when to permit me to assist and when to not. I respect her for simply staying on me and simply ensuring I used to be doing stuff the correct manner,” he stated. 

However Robinson’s assist system went far past his mom. Commanders head coach Ron Rivera, then-owner Dan Snyder and NFL followers regardless of their allegiances had been there for him. He finally made it again to the Commanders’ facility, and needed to get again to work. 

“I needed them to know that I used to be nonetheless open to what we had began engaged on, what we had began constructing and that I used to be nonetheless dedicated to the relationships that we had began forming over the summer season. I did not need to put my head down, as a result of I used to be decided to get again on my toes. That is the kind of vitality I wanted round me. That is the kind of vitality I give out. I need individuals to really feel like I am blissful and I am excited, even when generally I am not, as a result of that is the vitality that is gonna mirror round you, and that was the vitality that I wanted,” Robinson defined. 

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Robinson would finally discover his manner again to the follow area after grueling bodily remedy and restoration. Six weeks after his capturing, he was suiting up for his first NFL recreation — one thing, at one level, he didn’t suppose he would say he may do. 

“I virtually had every thing taken away from me earlier than I even began,” Robinson stated. “Even when I did not achieve one yard that day, it wasn’t about that. It was about my presence, with the ability to reside by what I had simply gone by and in addition nonetheless reside my dream of taking part in within the NFL.”

Robinson obtained to hold the ball 9 occasions for 22 yards, and although it was simply 2.44 yards per carry, not even he cared concerning the manufacturing. Working on the sphere and taking part in in that recreation towards the Tennessee Titans was a win sufficient. 

A couple of days later, Robinson was named the beginning working again towards the Chicago Bears on “Thursday Night time Soccer.” Everybody tuned in to see simply what Robinson may do, and he didn’t disappoint.

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Robinson had 60 yards on 17 carries together with his first profession landing. 

Brian Robinson warms up

Washington Commanders working again Brian Robinson Jr., gestures as he warms up earlier than an NFL soccer recreation towards the Tennessee Titans, Sunday, Oct. 9, 2022, in Landover, Md.  (AP Photograph/Jess Rapfogel)

“I knew it was going to be a troublesome recreation, and on the time, I did not actually know if I used to be prepared or not,” Robinson stated. “I did not know if I may make sure strikes and cuts or make sure individuals miss primarily based on how I felt on the time. However I used to be going to go on the market and play my finest.  

“I truly went on the market and did loads higher than I used to be anticipating to. That was an ideal second for me to point out what I used to be bringing to the desk for our workforce.”

Robinson had extra moments in his rookie marketing campaign, together with the “large hat after our recreation towards the Falcons.” Robinson was smiling from ear to ear carrying an enormous Commanders hat after the 19-13 win by which he rushed for 105 yards — his first 100-yard recreation of his profession. 

Whereas he’s prepared to start out 12 months 2 within the NFL, Robinson admits that “getting again to my previous self continues to be a course of.”

“If anyone is aware of what it is prefer to get shot by your knee, it is very traumatizing,” he stated. “I really feel loads higher at this time than I felt a month in the past, two months in the past, final 12 months. And I am persevering with to take strides.

Brian Robinson watches a preseason game

Brian Robinson #8 of the Washington Commanders seems to be on after the preseason recreation towards the Carolina Panthers at FedExField on August 13, 2022 in Landover, Maryland. (Scott Taetsch/Getty Photographs)

He continued: “I am a warrior. I really feel like I can stand my floor towards something I am up towards. If the battle finds me, I can battle it. That is simply my mindset taking part in working again within the NFL. I need to be the most effective, so I’ve to proceed creating the correct habits on and off the sphere, investing my time accurately and sticking to my script.

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“And to whoever is the primary defender I see this season, keep in mind this: Don’t run.”



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