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ASU LB Merlin Robertson invited to Washington Commanders rookie minicamp

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After going unselected in the 2023 NFL Draft, ASU LB Merlin Robertson earned an invite to the Washington Commanders rookie minicamp, per his agent.

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Robertson, listed at 6-foot-3 and 235 pounds, played all five of his collegiate seasons at ASU. He was a captain of the team the past two seasons and was also named to the preseason Butkus Award list both years. He recorded 83 tackles (third-most on the team), and five tackles-for-loss (most on the team) last season. Robertson played the most career snaps among active FBS linebackers (3,305). He had played in 53 games throughout his five years, accumulating 320 tackles (20.5 for loss), six interceptions and five forced fumbles.

Robertson was compositely ranked as the 407th best NFL Draft prospect, according to NFL Mock Draft Database. He was not invited to the NFL Combine, but did play in the Hula Bowl, where he performed well.

Robertson and Kyle Soelle, another five-year player for the Sun Devils who recently signed with the Cardinals, were the ASU two linebackers who were thought to be NFL Draft prospects. ASU has not had a linebacker drafted since Christian Sam was selected by the Patriots in the sixth round in 2018.

ASU players to watch in NFL Draft

Pro Day Results

Robertson particpated in ASU’s pro day on March 27. Below are his results, via draft scout. 

Merlin Robertson ASU Pro Day results

Scouting Report

Draft Network’s scouting report on Robertson:

“Pros: Merlin Robertson is a plus-level football player because of his versatility. At Arizona State, Robertson lines up at both stacked inside linebacker and on the end of the line as an edge rusher. As a stack backer, Robertson has the ability to work downhill to the line of scrimmage and fill any gaps. While filling those gaps, Robertson shows to be an effective tackler. On the end of the line of scrimmage in the edge rusher alignment, Robertson shows that he has the strength to set the edge. Robertson is capable of getting arm extension, blocking out the offensive lineman, and forcing runs back inside. Robertson is a solid player that shows to be an asset as a run defender.

Cons: Merlin Robertson’s mass and big frame help him as a run defender, but it hurts him in pass coverage. In man defense when Robertson is matched up with running backs and tight ends, he struggles to stay in phase with them and they often get open. As a zone defender, Robertson can change direction but his reactionary athleticism is not quick enough to be a consistent disruptive zone defender. Because of his lack of ability to cover, Robertson may be used as an edge rusher on third downs. Overall, Robertson is a good football player but his athletic deficiencies limit him to a first and second down player at this point.”

Robertson will look to fight for a roster spot for the Commanders.

ASU LB Kyle Soelle stays home, signs with Arizona Cardinals as UDFA

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Brendan Mau is a college sports insider and general assignment reporter for Burn City Sports. You can follow him on twitter via @Brendan_Mau

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