New England Patriots 2015 NFL Draft and Beyond

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Oct 25, 2014; Huntington, WV, USA; Marshall Thundering Herd defensive back Darryl Roberts (7) deflects a pass intended for Florida Atlantic Owls tight end Nate Terry (80) in the second quarter at Joan C. Edwards Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Michael Shroyer-USA TODAY Sports

7th Round (247th Overall, Via GB) – Darryl Roberts (CB, Marshall)


The Patriots finally addressed the cornerback position in the seventh round and picked Marshall defensive back Darryl Roberts. Roberts is undersized at five-foot-eleven and only 187 pounds. However, he is off-the-charts athletically and was productive against less than top-level receivers playing for Marshall. Roberts simply oozes athleticism and potential as a raw prospect.


2015 Role:

Roberts could not have come to a more cornerback needy team than New England. Last year he would have had no chance to make the roster, but in 2015 he is a potential starter. The Patriots let their top four cornerbacks Darrelle Revis, Brandon Browner, Kyle Arrington, and Alfonzo Dennard leave and suddenly the competition is wide open. Roberts has as much chance as anyone to play in 2015.


2016 and Beyond:

Realistically Roberts will have to earn his way on the roster through the practice squad, scout team, and special teams. If he is able to do that, he could carve out a role in the defensive backfield with some experience and a lot of coaching.


Similar pick in the past:

Roberts could surprise like undrafted free agent Malcolm Butler did in training camp last year. Butler made so many plays at practice that the Patriots had no choice but to keep the small school cornerback. Butler paid off as he made the game saving interception in the Super Bowl.