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Will McClay’s 2020 “pet cat” lands on IR, has been a non-contributor since being drafted

It’s been a rough two years for Dallas’ 2020 fourth-round draft pick.

NFL: DEC 20 49ers at Cowboys Photo by George Walker/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Sometimes it’s like pulling teeth trying to get a straight answer out of Jerry Jones or any of the other Dallas Cowboys brass. That’s why it was a bit odd last year when Vice President of Player Personnel Will McClay shared in an interview with 103.3 FM ESPN that his “pet cat” in the 2020 NFL Draft was someone the Cowboys had selected in the fourth round. That player was none other than the cornerback out of Tulsa, Reggie Robinson II.

Like Will McClay, Reggie Robinson was a “pet cat” for many of us around Cowboys Nation. With both Chidobe Awuzie and Jourdan Lewis entering contract years in 2020, the Cowboys were looking to upgrade and add depth to the cornerback position. That’s why it wasn’t all that surprising to see them double dip at at the cornerback position last year.

In the second and fourth round the Cowboys added Trevon Diggs and Reggie Robinson to the mix. Diggs, of course, would go on to become a starter last year, while Mike Nolan and his coaching staff decided to try to convert Robinson from corner to safety. The former Tulsa defensive back did have a little past experience at safety, so the move wasn’t completely unexpected. Sadly, things didn’t turn out as planned.

Reggie Robinson didn’t play a single defensive snap as a rookie last year. He never quite found his footing as a safety and was probably all too relieved to learn he would be switching back to corner when Dan Quinn took over as a new defensive coordinator this year. With his combination of size, length, and speed, he definitely checked all the boxes Quinn seems to prefer in his outside cornerbacks.

As (bad) luck would have it, any thoughts of earning a starting job, or even a backup one for that matter, were all but quashed when the Cowboys decided to double dip once again at cornerback in this year’s draft, selecting Kelvin Joseph and Nahshon Wright. With them, and the re-signing of Jourdan Lewis, Robinson was buried on the depth chart from the get-go.

The writing was pretty much already in the wall for Reggie Robinson before any offseason practices got underway. With the depth at corner, and his place on the depth chart, he was a long-shot to make the final 53-man roster. Surprisingly, he didn’t even make it that far and was just recently placed on injured reserve due to a toe injury.

Landing on IR at this point in the offseason means No. 41’s 2021 season is officially over. For the second year in a row with the Cowboys he will not play a single defensive snap or contribute on special teams. It’s an unfortunate end to his sophomore season, and a bit of a slap in the face for all of us who had high hopes for him, but it’s the reality of the NFL.

Right now there’s no way of knowing what the future holds for Reggie Robinson with the Dallas Cowboys. He will be halfway through his rookie contract when he’s able to suit up again next season and will likely be buried on the depth chart once again. Despite that, he still has some fans around Cowboys Nation rooting for him to find success eventually with the Cowboys.

Who knows if Will McClay is still one of them?