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Rams DC Raheem Morris Delivers Context on A'Shawn Robinson's Limited Role in Recent Weeks

Why has A'Shawn Robinson's snap count gone down in recent weeks?

When the Los Angeles Rams signed A'Shawn Robinson as a free agent during the offseason ahead of the 2020 season, the hope was he could become an anchor alongside Aaron Donald and others on the defensive line.

Robinson, the former second-round pick of the Detroit Lions, began the 2021 campaign as a starter but in recent weeks his role has slowly diminished.

Robinson has accumulated just 31% of the defensive snaps through the first six games. As for the last two weeks, his snap counts have dropped to 20% in Week 5 and 19% in Week 6, equating to 27 total snaps.

“I wouldn't even know about his snap count," defensive coordinator Raheem Morris said. "We have roles in our defense. We have certain things that we do. I think A’Shawn has really been playing good football for us. So, it wouldn't be a result of a coach saying to get them less snaps. But, if we're in a pass rush situation, I’d probably want to see a little bit more (Michael) Hoecht than I want to see A’Shawn. We're in a run situation, definitely want to see more A’Shawn and not to say that they can't do both, but just how it probably works out. (I) didn't really think about the snap count in that.” 

Morris specifically named Hoecht as a guy that he favors in passing situations. After seeing a spike in Hoecht's snap count, it appears that this role is evolving more into a platoon situation between the two defenders as the Rams look to play matchups depending on what the situation calls for.

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Hoecht received 36% of the defensive snaps last week against the New York Giants, marking the highest usage he's seen so far this season.

For a player like Robinson who’s making starting-caliber money on the books, ideally, the team would like him to be a three-down player.

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 Nick Cothrel is the Publisher of Ram Digest. Follow Nick and Ram Digest on Twitter @NickCothrel & @RamDigestSI for more Rams coverage.