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Patriots Draft Defensive Tackle Sam Roberts From Northwest Missouri

BOSTON (CBS) -- The Patriots waited until pick No. 200 of the draft to add to their front seven, and they did it with Sam Roberts out of Northwest Missouri.

Roberts, a defensive tackle, won the 2021 Cliff Harris Award as the best small-college defensive player in the country. Playing at the Division II level, the 6-foot-5, 292-pound Roberts recorded 61 total tackles, included 18 for a loss, in 13 games last season. He had 6.5 sacks and a forced fumble, too. In his four-year career, he recorded 184 total tackles (47 for a loss), 18.5 sacks, one interception, six pass defenses, and two forced fumbles.

Roberts was the eighth player selected by the Patriots in this year's draft. Previously the Patriots had spent two picks on running backs, two picks on cornerbacks, and one pick apiece on quarterback, guard, and wide receiver. The team has targeted smaller schools, too, with Cole Strange (UT-Chattanooga) and Pierre Strong Jr. (South Dakota State) coming from FCS schools.

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