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James Robinson is happy to join the winning team as Jets plan to ‘take it easy’


Over more than two NFL seasons in Jacksonville, James Robinson returned in 35 games. His Jaguars won four.

A surprising new reality of the 2022 Jets is that players are added, not subtracted. Acquired pieces join the ship and flee from the one they sink.

“Feels pretty good I’ll say – 5-2″ [record] of 2-5,” Robinson said after practice Wednesday, his first with his new team after the Jets traded for their Breece Hall replacement this week. “[Winning] makes it really exciting.”

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The question is, when will he be a part of that victory? Robinson said the team is keeping the playbook simple, which at least opens the door to a debut Sunday against the Patriots. But the Jets, who also promoted the return of Zonovan Knight to the active roster, said they would take it easy with Robinson and see what he looks like.

The 24-year-old tore his Achilles tendon in a game against the Jets last December. He returned nine months later, able to open the season when the Jaguars started running back.

James Robinson practices with the Jets on Wednesday.
Bill Kostroun

But his use declined as the weeks passed. In Sunday’s loss to the Giants, Robinson was unaffected as Travis Etienne, their 2021 first-round pick, became the Jaguars’ workhorse. After the game, Jacksonville head coach Doug Pederson told reporters that Robinson had “lower body problems.” A day later, he was sent to the Jets for parole.

“There was really no communication. Last Sunday I felt like I should have played, but of course [I didn’t]said Robinson, adding that he is healthy. “I thought it was going to be a one-two punch, that sort of thing. I feel like they probably fell out of there a bit. I think they used my ‘not being healthy’ as an excuse, I guess.”

Robinson physically passed his Jets. He practiced on Wednesday and was not on the injury report. He acknowledged “there will be pain” in his knee, but nothing abnormal.

Robinson departed Illinois State in 2020. He stayed with the Jaguars and became a remarkable story, rushing for 1,070 yards and seven touchdowns in his rookie campaign. He averaged 4.7 yards per carry in 14 games before the injury cost him the end of last season.

This season he had trade for 340 yards on 81 carries (4.2 per).

James Robinson speaks to the media.
Bill Kostroun

“I am a hard runner. I try not to get too cute with a lot of things,” said Robinson, who is listed at 5 feet-9 and 219 pounds — a slightly stockier version of Michael Carter, who seems to complement Robinson after Hall. , the star rookie, tore his ACL on Sunday.

“[Robinson] looks like Michael in stature, but he’s a one-cut runner, he’s going downhill fast,” head coach Robert Saleh said on Wednesday. “Really, really good addition to what Ty Johnson and Michael bring to the table, so keep trying that versatility to keep in our room.

“Obviously losing Breece is a big blow, but James Robinson is also a pretty good footballer.”