|Koren Robinson thrown right in by Seahawks|
|Written by Admin|
|Wednesday, 17 September 2008 15:35|
Both wanted to see how the wide receiver performed on the first day of his unlikely return to the team that drafted him ninth overall in 2001, then fired him three years ago for his alcohol troubles.
He made a diving catch of a pass from Matt Hasselbeck across the middle during Wednesday's practice, one of the first routes for Robinson in Seattle since Jan. 8, 2005, a playoff loss to St. Louis.
Then he watched the last 30 minutes of practice, listening to his body tell him he's not yet in playing shape. He's been unemployed since May.
``Just being cautious. I'm not going to come in and do 100 reps right now,'' said Robinson, who weighs 211 pounds and hopes to get down to 204. ``I've been working out, but that can't simulate football.''
Ready or not, Robinson will play Sunday for the desperate Seahawks against the Rams, a matchup of 0-2 teams.
late-round draft pick - ``listen, as unfair as this may sound, I'm going to push you out on the field.''
Seattle already has six wide receivers injured. So Robinson is going in at split end and maybe even as a kick returner, with Colbert at flanker.
Holmgren said he hasn't figured out who will start Sunday. Disappointing Courtney Taylor, plus undrafted rookie Michael Bumpus and Billy McMullen, signed last week, are the other healthy wide receivers on the roster.
``He's in pretty good shape, not great shape,'' Holmgren said of Robinson, whom Seattle drafted ninth overall in 2001.
Robinson said he has U-turned from jail time, suspensions and a possible lifetime ban from the NFL. From what he said was ``being selfish. I just (did) everything that I wanted to do, not really thinking about the consequences, not really thinking about anybody else but myself.''
``I've grown up fast - faster than most people want to - but I have,'' Robinson said.
He is back, sober for 25 months, a 28-year-old husband, a father to two young boys with a girl due in a few weeks. Back to aid the decimated Seahawks.
``I'm just fortunate that it came full circle and I'm back here in my first home,'' he said.
ammates. The coach fined him - ``he still owes me some money, by the way,'' Holmgren said. He sent Robinson to rehabilitation. None of it worked.
In May 2005, Robinson was arrested and charged with DUI and reckless driving. New team president Tim Ruskell cut him a month later.
He had a Pro Bowl season as a kick returner with the Minnesota Vikings in 2005. Then in August 2006 he was arrested again for what police said was a car chase at speeds more than 100 mph, and for Robinson having a blood-alcohol content of 0.11 percent, above the legal limit of 0.08. He was sentenced to 90 days in jail, then another three months in jail for violating probation from a separate drunk-driving arrest in Kirkland, Wash. The NFL suspended him for a year.
He returned to catch 21 passes for Green Bay in eight games last season, then four more in January's NFC championship game.
Sunday will be his first game since then. He's been back home in Raleigh, N.C., working out, waiting for a team to call and continuing to repair his life.
``He came in as a very young - very talented, but very young - kid, who got a lot of money right away. Who was given a starting job right away, and who had a lot on his shoulders,'' Hasselbeck said. ``He was far from home, far from friends and family. It was a tough situation. I know that he has learned a lot - the hard way.
``He's fortunate for the opportunity.''
0-year-old former high school history teacher, father of four and grandfather of six, said he's always treated Robinson like one of his kids.
``I hope it's a good story,'' Holmgren said. ``I always felt as though I failed him somehow. A few years ago, I couldn't seem to touch the right buttons or emphasize the things that his behavior would need, certainly.
``Now, I guess, yeah, I'm hoping.''