The Washington Commanders have established themselves as a run-heavy team that intends to control the pace of games. Since Week 6, those goals have been reached; Washington has rushed for at least 100 yards in seven of the last eight games, and it leads the league in time of possession.
A big reason for that has been the emergence of Brian Robinson.
Robinson missed the first four games of the season because of multiple gunshot wounds sustained before the season, but the rookie running back has improved every week to the point where he has been one of the Commanders' most valuable offensive weapons during the team's winning stretch.
Since his return against the Tennessee Titans, Robinson has 563 rushing yards and leads all rookie running backs with an overall grade of 86.4 from Pro Football Focus.
Fans have come to expect explosive or game-changing plays from Robinson. So, here are five of the best moments from Robinson's season so far.
Robinson sprints for 21 yards against the Falcons.
Robinson is not necessarily known for his ability to attack the edges, but he is capable of it on occasion. He reminded the Falcons' defense of that fact in Week 12.
On third-and-inches in the third quarter, Robinson took a toss to the left and slipped into the secondary for a 21-yard gain. The play put the Commanders into Falcons' territory, but what was more impressive was how Robinson followed his blockers and ran through the crease provided by John Bates and Dyami Brown.
It was also a big reason why Robinson was able to record his first 100-yard game on the ground.
Robinson plows through Packers defenders.
While Robinson does have more speed and quickness than anticipated, the former Alabama running back is known more for his physicality and ability to stay upright. One of the best examples of that came in Week 7 against the Green Bay Packers.
Like the play against the Falcons, Robinson broke loose attacking the defensive perimeter and burst into the secondary. He was first met by two defensive backs at the 20-yard line, but rather than go down, he kept his feet moving for another nine yards before finally being tackled with five Packers around him at the 11.
The play helped the Commanders get in the red zone, and three plays later, Washington scored its first touchdown of the afternoon to cut into Green Bay's lead.
Robinson scores his first career touchdown.
Every player remembers their first NFL touchdown. Technically, Robinson found the end zone in the preseason, but his first one that counted came on Thursday Night Football against the Chicago Bears when the Commanders desperately needed points on the board.
The play came after a lucky break for the Commanders, when Christian Holmes fell on a muffed punt that set the offense up at the Bears' 6-yard line. It seemed like the plan was to make sure Robinson got in the end zone as both plays on the drive were runs by the rookie.
Robinson pushed his way across the goal line to give Washington a 12-7 lead, and while it might not look as impressive as other runs that he had later in the season, it was a critical moment that helped snap the Commanders' losing streak.
Robinson bowls over a Falcons defender on his first receiving touchdown.
Robinson is not just known for his ability as a runner. He can also operate as a pass-catcher when called upon. So far, he only has eight catches this season, but the most memorable is certainly the one he had on the Commanders' opening drive against the Falcons.
Washington, which had not scored on its opening drive of a game since Week 1, was set up at the Falcons' 14-yard line. Robinson ran out wide on first-and-10 and caught the ball about a yard past the line of scrimmage. He met his first obstacle at the 5: cornerback Darren Hall, who wisely tried to get as low as possible against Robinson.
It did not matter. Robinson trucked through the tackle and powered through another for the 14-yard touchdown, giving the Commanders the lead. After the game, Robinson said that it is expected for him to break through a defensive back's tackle. Suffice it to say, he won that battle easily.
Robinson gives Washington the lead against the Eagles.
It may have been the grittiest play in a game that demanded Washington be as physical as possible to upset the last remaining undefeated team in the NFL.
Robinson had already done a good job of getting Washington in scoring position. Back-to-back runs of 11 and two yards had the offense set up at the 1-yard line, and on second-and-goal, Washington decided to give the ball to Robinson one more time.
Robinson took the handoff up the middle, and he was immediately enveloped by Eagles defenders. But Robinson kept churning his feet, and with one last effort before falling to the ground, he reached the ball over the goal line to give Washington the lead.
The touchdown was just one of the 26 carries Robinson got that night, and more importantly, it forced the Eagles to play catchup for the rest of the game.