By Doug Miller
Khiry Robinson knows what it’s like to go above and beyond for recognition, to surprise people with an undeniable impact on the football field.
The running back did it when he came out of NAIA Division II West Texas A&M to sign with the New Orleans Saints as an undrafted free agent in 2013 after a tryout. He would go on to gain 224 yards in 10 NFL games that year and help the Saints beat the Philadelphia Eagles in the playoffs.
Robinson backed up Mark Ingram in 2014 and played well in 2015 until a broken leg ended his season. He ended up gaining 766 yards while part of New Orleans coach Sean Payton’s rotation of running backs and scored eight touchdowns.
Robinson broke his leg the next year in a preseason game for the Jets and continued to suffer leg injuries that led to his release from the NFL in March 2017.
Now he’s back, trying to prove himself again.
Robinson signed with the San Antonio franchise in The Alliance of American Football, and he’ll be ready to go when that elite-level spring-schedule venture kicks off its first regular-season games Feb. 9, 2019.
Robinson has been fighting for his whole professional career. Back in 2014, at the height of his NFL presence, looking back as a product of the Canyon, Texas, program that hadn’t exactly made him a household name, Robinson told ESPN: “it was all about having faith.”
“So I didn’t get drafted, I didn’t get picked up, you know,” he said then. “But it all worked out for me. I just kept my head high, kept my faith and kept working hard. And I’m here today to help the team win. I’m happy for that.”
It figures to be just as tough if not tougher for Robinson now. He’s had serious leg injuries, and he’s 28 years old. But he’s also experienced. He has been through the NFL grind. He’s entering a situation where opportunity is there for him to impress the people he needs to impress.
But he’s been through this before, and his words from 2014 can be repeated if he succeeds in this next opportunity.
“I just wait for my number to be called,” Robinson said. “And when my number’s called, I try to do something great so I can get it called again.”