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Signing of Keenan Robinson gives Bills more veteran LB depth

The Bills filled the last open spot on their roster Tuesday by signing veteran linebacker Keenan Robinson.

Robinson is entering his seventh NFL season and has started 30 of his 58 career games. He made 21 starts with Washington in 2014 and 2015 and nine starts with the New York Giants in 2016 and ’17. He only played six games with New York last season before going out for the year with a quad injury.

The 6-foot-3, 245 pound Robinson gives the Bills another backup veteran option at outside or inside linebacker.

He played weak-side linebacker almost exclusively the past two years for the Giants. He has coverage ability. He played 71 percent of the Giants’ defensive snaps in 2016. He played inside linebacker in a 3-4 scheme for Washington. Again, he saw a lot of coverage action, playing about 90 percent of the snaps in 2014.

Entering the start of training camp on Thursday, 228-pound Tanner Vallejo, who saw only 13 defensive snaps as a rookie last year, is the incumbent backup to starting rookie middle linebacker Tremaine Edmunds.

The Bills now have 10 linebackers on the roster, with Matt Milano the entrenched weak-side starter and Lorenzo Alexander the strong-side starter. The competition for backup jobs will be wide open, and Robinson’s credentials put him firmly in the mix to win a job. Ramon Humber, a 10th-year veteran, was the backup to Milano by the end of last season. The Bills signed sixth-year veteran Julian Stanford in free agency. He’s primarily a middle linebacker, and he's a strong candidate to win a job, too.

Robinson entered the NFL as a fourth-round draft pick of Washington out of the University of Texas. He made 108 tackles in 2014.

 

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