— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) September 8, 2021
Roby is expected to fill a void and start opposite Saints cornerback Marshon Lattimore. The eighth-year veteran has one game remaining on his six-game suspension for violating the league’s performance-enhancing drug policy last year.
Roby, a 2014 first-round pick out of Ohio State, earned a 71.5 overall PFF grade last season. He was drafted by the Denver Broncos and spent the last two years in Houston. He signed a three-year, $36 million contract with the Texans last offseason.
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Saints need him at his best: The veteran has been a consistently solid corner in the NFL, but his best play takes him above that level to the realms of an extremely valuable No. 2 cornerback. His best PFF grade came in 2017 when he recorded 15 pass breakups over the season. Click here for PFF Premium Stats.
Play him in zone: Roby's play has been markedly better in zone coverage schemes over the past several seasons. And while the Saints play Cover 1 the most of any single coverage shell, they play zone coverage on around 60% of their snaps.
|1. Casey Hayward Jr.||458||70||15.3%|
|2. Robert Alford||398||59||14.8%|
|3. Marlon Humphrey||339||49||14.5%|
|4. Stephon Gilmore||524||74||14.1%|
|5. Ronald Darby||452||63||13.9%|
|5. Ross Cockrell||302||42||13.9%|
|7. James Bradberry||445||61||13.7%|
|8. Marshon Lattimore||301||41||13.6%|
|9. Shaquill Griffin||301||40||13.3%|
|10. Bradley Roby||498||65||13.1%|
Solid across the board in 2020: Last season, Roby ranked ninth among cornerbacks in coverage snaps per target and 15th in coverage snaps per reception allowed.
The Saints' Outlook: New Orleans ranks seventh in the NFL in spread points above average, with Jameis Winston projected to be a league-average quarterback against the spread in 2021. PFF's new Power Rankings Tool offers projections based on 10,000 season simulations, given Team Point Spread Ratings, Strength of Schedule and team records.
Keep an eye on the under? Roby helps bolster an already impressive Saints' secondary, but they need all the help they can get against the second-most-difficult schedule in 2021. For this reason, we are slightly lower on the Saints' 2021 outlook than betting markets, with our simulation falling just short of their expected 9-game win total. PFF's Betting Futures Tool reveals betting opportunities within season win total and future markets.
Value on Saints at +4: The veteran corner won't be much help in Week 1 against the top returning offense in terms of opponent-adjusted grades. The spread has continued to move away from the Saints, with PFF Greenline finding the smallest amount of value on the Saints at +4. PFF Greenline uses exclusive game and player data to make projections on NFL game spreads, moneyline, and over/under.