Roberts, 29, was a seventh-round draft pick for the New England Patriots in 2015. Of course, that overlapped with Lions head coach Matt Patricia’s time in New England, but Roberts would not end up spending much time in Foxborough. He spent his rookie season on injured reserve and did not end up making the team in 2016.
However, his career caught on when the Jets swooped him up from waivers. He played in 12 games his first season with the Jets, starting two. In 2018, he grew into a starting role, starting 10 of the final 12 games of the season, while racking up seven passes defended and an interception.
His performance was good enough for the Jets to hand him a three-year, $18 million extension before the 2019 season. However, Roberts struggled last year, earning just a 56.6 PFF grade while allowing a passer rating of 99.6 when targeted. He eventually lost his job as a starter, and the Jets cut him earlier this year, saving $6 million in cap space.
For the Lions, Roberts comes in and will immediately compete for the CB2 job opposite Desmond Trufant. As of now, his only main competition is 2019 fifth-round pick Amani Oruwariye, who looked decent in limited action his rookie year. However, the Lions are likely to add some cornerback help in this month’s NFL draft, and Roberts addition doesn’t likely change that.