THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – Four and a half months ago, veteran wide receiver Demarcus Robinson was competing for a spot on the Rams' roster during training camp, a long-awaited next NFL opportunity after remaining unsigned for the majority of the offseason.
His acrobatic catches were a highlight of those late July and early August practices, and they've resurfaced again in recent weeks as a meaningful contribution to Los Angeles' offense – during a crucial part of the season, no less.
"Just trying to come in, have a positive attitude, knowing I had a chance to make the team, and granted I did," Robinson said this week. "Just trying to teach guys stuff and learn from other guys like Cooper (Kupp) and some of the other guys, Matthew (Stafford), Tyler Higbee. Just trying to learn from other other teammates and, shoot, help the younger ones. I didn't know our wide receiver room was gonna be as stacked as it was, but that's crazy how well Puka (Nacua)'s doing."
Yes, even among an experienced, returnee-laden group of L.A. pass-catchers, Robinson has found a way to make an impact.
He had four catches for 55 yards and one touchdown in the Rams' Week 13 win over the Browns, the touchdown catch kickstarting a stretch that saw Los Angeles outscore Cleveland 23-6 from the end of the third quarter through the end of the game to capture the 36-19 L.A. victory.
While the Rams lost to the Ravens 37-31 in overtime in Week 14, Robinson's 7-yard touchdown catch had given the Rams lead the back 28-23 with 4:41 left in the fourth quarter. He had three catches for 46 yards and one touchdown overall.
Asked about expectations for Robinson at the time he was signed, Rams head coach Sean McVay said "I don't really go into it like that as much as I just knew that he was a guy that could help our football team." McVay had enjoyed watching Robinson's game from afar, and though Robinson had a good body of work that could be evaluated on tape. Being around Robinson, McVay has noticed the demeanor and energy he has, as well as the way teammates love being around him.
"Then I think especially the last couple weeks, he and (quarterback) Matthew (Stafford) have developed a really good rapport," McVay said Monday. "He has made a lot of really big-time catches, obviously gotten in the end zone a couple times, but he's made some big-time individual wins in some man coverage situations, made a bunch of crunch time and clutch catches for us yesterday that gave us a chance to be able to win that football game. He's going to be an important part of this thing moving forward. He's earned that right. I'm really happy for him and you can see he and Matthew have developed a good rapport."
Previously playing four seasons with the Chiefs (2016-21) and one with the Ravens (2022), Robinson has been on a playoff team every year of his NFL career thus far and is on a Rams team in the midst making a push for the postseason.
In Stafford's eyes, Robinson is simply doing what a receiver is expected to do.
"He's separating," Stafford said. "He's doing a nice job at the top of routes winning, made some contested catches – obviously that third down catch was a huge one early in the game down the sideline. Big play in the two-minute drive. Obviously the touchdown was a great kind of scramble-mode, secondary adjustment. So he's done a really nice job of separating, making plays and just being himself, which is great."
Thinking back to training camp versus where he is now, Robinson is simply grateful to have an opportunity to in the position he's in.
"It feels great, man," Robinson said. "It feels good to be able to be used and be a part of something, knowing that you are able to contribute. Knowing the coaches and your teammates trust in you to be able to get those opportunities, and then go out and be able to make plays with those opportunities. It only leads to more, so I'm pretty excited."