Detroit Lions add cornerback Darryl Roberts, another player with Patriots ties

Tribune Content Agency

It shouldn’t preclude them from taking a cornerback high in this month’s NFL draft, but the Detroit Lions added more help for their secondary Thursday, agreeing to a one-year deal with defensive back Darryl Roberts.

Roberts, who started 10 games for New York Jets last season, including four at safety, is the third cornerback the Lions have signed this offseason.

He joins Desmond Trufant, who agreed to a two-year deal the first day of the 2020 league year, and special-teams stalwart Tony McRae.

The Lions entered free agency in need of two starting-caliber cornerbacks.

They traded three-time Pro Bowler Darius Slay to the Philadelphia Eagles, and let Rashaan Melvin walk in free agency.

Trufant, Roberts and Justin Coleman stand atop the Lions’ current depth chart at cornerback, with Amani Oruwariye, Jamal Agnew and Mike Ford among others under contract.

The Lions have been commonly linked to Ohio State cornerback Jeff Okudah with their first-round pick, No. 3 overall.

A seventh-round pick by the New England Patriots in 2015, when Lions coach Matt Patricia was the team’s defensive coordinator, Roberts spent his rookie season on injured reserve before playing the last four years for the Jets.

He started 26 games over four seasons in New York and has three career interceptions. Roberts played about a third of the Jets’ special-teams snaps last season and filled in at safety while Marcus Maye was out with a shoulder injury.


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