The pressure from expectations isn’t going to hold Bijan Robinson back

NFL: AUG 05 Atlanta Falcons Training Camp

#8 overall pick Bijan Robinson made his highly anticipated Falcons debut yesterday in Week 2 of the preseason. The starters only played one drive, with the Texas product touching the ball five times for 26 yards. However, we really only needed to see one play to get a glimpse of what to expect from one of the most talented running backs ever to come out of college.

Bijan Robinson is the clear-cut favorite to win the Offensive Rookie of the Year award, and it might be one of the safest bets of the preseason at +275 odds.

Not only was Robinson the most NFL ready prospect to enter the draft this year, but he couldn’t have landed in a better situation. Arthur Smith wants to run the rock as much as any coach in football. The Falcons feature one of the most creative running schemes, and Smith will also find a way to utilize Robinson as a receiver, where he did a ton of damage during his time at Texas. It’s going to be the Bijan show on Sunday in Atlanta. The rookie will soon be one of the biggest stars in the city, but Robinson is doing his best not to let the hype get to his head.

“I’m a guy that doesn’t look ahead,” Robinson said, via Daniel Flick of “I’m always where my feet are, just knowing that I’ve got to do what I’ve got to do today. And then if I don’t know make it happen today, then I’ve got a better opportunity to do it tomorrow. So, I mean, me looking ahead, it’s hard for me to do.”

The Robinson selection has been highly criticized by many national media pundits, but most people that follow the Falcons closely — fans, analysts, etc. — began to really warm up to the idea as the draft approaches. Arthur Smith and Terry Fontenot also referred to it as an easy decision. They knew he was their guy right when they sat down and spoke with him.

Bijan Robinson is an electrifying athlete that will be a walking mismatch in Arthur Smith’s offense, but the new regime puts an emphasis on a lot more than that when bringing guys into the building. They are attempting to establish a certain type of culture, and Robinson — the person — might be even better than who he is as a player.

Hype, expectations, pressure, and outside noise aren’t going to be on the mind of Robinson when the season kicks off in a few weeks. He’s focused on taking things day by day. With that mindset, there will plenty of hardware waiting for him throughout his career.

“I understand where that talk’s coming from but, like I said, every single day, trying to get better,” Robinson said, via Daniel Flick of “And then, hopefully down the line, something happens, but I’m not really looking at that right now.”

Photo: Jeff Robinson/Icon Sportswire

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