Robinson, Dunta

Cards: Score 2008
Acquired: TTM, Texans Blitz 2009.

Dunta Robinson was the Houston Texans third first round choice in the history of the franchise, taken in 2004 by then general manager Charlie Casserly with the 10th overall pick. He’d be penciled in almost immediately as a starter at RCB for the young franchise across from Aaron Glenn and  Dunta would have an impact season with 87 tackles and 5 interceptions. This would be his career high. In 2005 the team would start purging veterans, and Robinson would become the leader in the secondary, but he’d still manage to defend 10 passes and make an interception but the team would slump to a 2-14 record.  The next season the team would draft his teammate Fred Bennett to work opposite Dunta, but Robinson would then have a serious knee injury in week 9 of 2007, that would sideline him for the rest of the season and for the first 6 games of 2008. Although his recovery from the injury was impressive and heartwarming, Dunta did lose a step. He’d also make 2 interceptions in the 2008 season passing Aaron Glenn for the team career leader with 13.

The offseason would prove to be acrimonious for Robinson as he held out for a big multi-season contract with the Texans. General manager Rick Smith saw otherwise and stuck him with the Franchise Tag- the first designated on a Texan player. Dunta spitefully would not show up to camp until one week before the season started, signing his tender for a one year deal worth 9.957 million dollars. To add salt to the wound, Dunta would show up with “PAY ME RICK” written on his cleats for the opening game against the Jets. The ensuing media brouhaha over the message would enrage fans and annoy management turning him from a team hero to villain. The team would respond after the Jets loss, just missing the playoffs with a 9-7 record. Starting all 16 games, Dunta would not make a single interception. While Robinson expressed his desire and excitement to remain with the Texans, citing the teams’ first winning record as the reason, the Texans would not retain his services. Dunta would become a free agent in early 2010 and within days, would ink a 6 year contract with his hometown Atlanta Falcons, with 22.5 million dollars in guarantees.

Robinson was never the same after his ACL injury, plus once he assumed the #1 defensive back role in the secondary he never made more than 2 interceptions in a season, or became the game breaker that former DB Aaron Glenn was, making many bad arm tackles along the way. In 2009, there also didn’t seem to be that same fire that was there the previous seasons, and you could almost tell he would get easily frustrated and lose his composure. Indeed, Robinson in 2009 was one of the most targeted defenders in the league allowing 64.7% of passes thrown his direction to be completed and didn’t make a single interception or finish in double digits in pass defensed. Regardless, best of luck to a cornerback who was once the heralded son of Houston and now sadly leaves as the black sheep. Listed below are his final statistics for the Texans.

Games  84        Tac   394     Sac  4      FF  6   Int  13       Yds  162    Avg 12.5      Td  1     Lg 61