Denard goes to Jaguars in 5th round

Jacksonville selects former Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson in the fifth round of the NFL draft.

Denard Robinson, the all-time leading rusher for a quarterback in college football history, insists he doesn’t care what position the Jacksonville Jaguars want him to play.

“Whatever it takes finding a niche there … whatever it takes to get on the field,” Robinson said after the Jaguars selected him Saturday with the second pick of the fifth round, No. 135 overall, in the NFL Draft.

The Jags designated him as a running back, but Robinson also could be a receiver, a return specialist, or a wildcat quarterback. Some teams even projected him as a cornerback.

Bottom line: He’s an athlete who has to create a niche for himself in the NFL.

“Now it’s time for me to go to work,” said Robinson, who is returning to his home state after growing up in Deerfield Beach.

Nicknamed “Shoelace” because he doesn’t like to tie his shoes, Robinson (5-foot-10, 199 pounds) rushed for 4,495 yards during his college career. Much of it was spent as a quarterback, but he played a versatile offensive role late in his senior year after suffering nerve damage to his right (throwing) elbow.

“I’m surprised he didn’t go earlier,” NFL Network analyst Mike Mayock said.

Mayock said that Robinson is “as tough as anybody I’ve seen” and expects him to play a big role on special teams, including as a “gunner” on punts.

Robinson was the first Michigan player selected in this year’s draft. It is the first time since 1968 that the Wolverines didn’t have a player taken in the first four rounds.


Two Michigan State players were drafted Saturday, with tight end Dion Sims going to Miami in the fourth round (No. 106 overall) and defensive end William Gholston to Tampa Bay in the fourth round (No. 126). Cornerback Johnny Adams was not drafted.

— Robinson’s Michigan teammate, offensive guard Will Campbell, was taken in the sixth round by the New York Jets (No. 178).

— Grand Valley State receiver Charles Johnson went to Green Bay in the seventh round with pick No. 216.

— The Cincinnati Bengals took Ohio State offensive tackle Reid Fragel, who is from Grosse Pointe (Mich.) South High, in the seventh round (No. 240).

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