INDIANAPOLIS — When Demarcus Robinson reflects on his career at the University of Florida, he isn’t afraid to call himself selfish.
Before his second year as a Gator, Robinson failed three drug tests for marijuana, which led to three suspensions. Robinson, now at the NFL combine preparing for a professional career, wants teams to know he’s a changed man.
“I know I have made mistakes and I’ve learned from my mistakes,” Robinson told a group of reporters in Indianapolis. “It’s just about telling the truth and getting it out all in the open now. I’m not the same person I was three years ago.”
Robinson spent 45 days at Florida Recovery Center to combat his drug addiction. He admits that those 45 days were difficult but worth it in the end.
“I just had to let my teammates and coaches know that I wasn’t going to do this again,” Robinson said. “I was doing everything I could to let them know that that wasn’t me. What I was doing was selfish and really wrong of me, so I had to show them that I really wanted to be on the team.”
Various NFL Draft experts have said Robinson has first-round talent, but all of the off-field concerns hurt his stock. Almost every single team he’s met with this week has started the conversation asking about his suspensions.
“They have been asking me how I think I’ll do in the NFL with the four suspensions I have had — three of them my freshman year,” he said. “I haven’t failed a drug test since then.”
His fourth suspension, which happened his final season at Florida, came after he met with a marketing representative who “offered me something that I had never been offered before.” His teammates ultimately allowed him back on the team after a vote.
The 6-foot-1, 203-pounder believes the drug suspensions kept on coming throughout his career because he admits that it wasn’t a focus of his to turn his life around. Now that he’s here for the biggest job interview of his life, Robinson is ready to put his past where it belongs.
“Coming out and telling the truth was easy,” he said.
Robinson is hoping to run his 40-yard dash in the 4.3 range, which would make him one of the most sought-after receiver prospects in the draft.