Bryan Robinson, an NFL defensive lineman who played 14 years in the league for five different teams, has passed away. Authorities found Robinson's body inside of a Milwaukee motel room late Saturday night, and while it doesn't appear that foul play was involved, the cause of death has yet to be determined. Robinson was 41 years old.
In his long career, Robinson played for the Rams, Cardinals, Bengals, Bears and Dolphins. He last suited up for the Cardinals in the 2010 season. He spent the bulk of his career in Chicago, playing there from 1998-2003.
After a one-year stint with Miami in 2004, Robinson played in Cincinnati for three seasons (2005-2007), racking up 50 total tackles and 4.5 sacks in 42 games played. He was a valuable member of a defensive line Marvin Lewis revamped in the early years of his Bengals head coaching tenure.
Former Bears defensive coordinator, Greg Blache, who coached Robinson for five seasons reminisced on Robinson's style of play and was sad to hear about his passing.
"He was a tough player. He was a good teammate. He was a fiery guy. He had a little bit of a short fuse but he was always with you and you knew that. You could challenge him and push him and he was going to compete. He was a valuable piece to our defense and he wasn’t a glamorous piece. You didn’t have tons of articles on B-Rob. He wasn’t the fancy kind of player but he was the grunt that made it work. I don’t care what we asked him to do, he did it. My heart is broken this morning. It is hard to explain because I have a big void in my chest. He was one of my guys. A lot of people play for you and they come through and they do it, but B-Rob was one of my guys. He was welcome to my house. He’d come to my house and eat. We’d visit on different things. It is a sad morning."
Robinson's tale as a player is one of those stories many young NFL players hope to achieve. After going undrafted out of Fresno State in 1997, Robinson kept hanging on to teams and contributing at high levels for 14 seasons. He played a big role in the 2001 playoff run with the Bears, as well as helping Arizona get to Super Bowl XLIII.