The New England Patriots’ quest to add another tight end fell through after the trade with the Detroit Lions for Michael Roberts was voided one day after it happened. According to Adam Schefter of ESPN, the trade was canceled after Roberts failed his physical with the Patriots, per his sources. Earlier, the Patriots agreed to ship a conditional seventh-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft to the Lions for the 25-year-old Roberts.

With the latest development, Roberts was reverted to the Lions’ roster, but Detroit promptly waived him. Roberts recently underwent shoulder surgery in December, but claimed during an interview with the Detroit Free Press that he’s “up and running.” Roberts became dispensable after the Lions upgraded their tight end corps by signing Jesse James and Logan Thomas from the free agent pool and selecting T.J. Hockenson and Isaac Nauta from the 2019 NFL Draft.

Patriots could still sign Roberts via the waiver wire

The Patriots were hoping to add depth to their thin tight end corps via the Roberts trade. Currently, the Patriots have Matt LaCosse as their top tight end following the retirement of Rob Gronkowski, the four-game suspension of veteran Ben Watson and the release of Austin Seferian-Jenkins. Aside from LaCosse and Watson, the Patriots have Stephen Anderson, Ryan Izzo, and Andrew Beck in their tight end chart.

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According to Andie Hagemann of NFL.com, the Patriots could still sign Roberts via the waiver wire without costing them any future draft pick. A fourth-round pick out of Toledo in 2017, the 6-foot-5 Roberts caught nine passes for 100 yards and three touchdowns last season. In his two-year stint with the Lions, he tallied 13 receptions for 146 yards in 23 games. Earlier, the Patriots hoped to acquire Kyle Rudolph via trade with the Minnesota Vikings, but he opted to sign a four-year extension worth $36 million.

Patriots to practice with Lions, Titans

The Patriots will hold several joint practices with the Lions and the Tennessee Titans before the 2019 preseason begins. The Lions announced that they would have joint practices with the Patriots on August 5, 6 and 7 at the Allen Park practice facility, a 15-minute drive from downtown Detroit. The practice sessions will serve as a warmup prior to their preseason meeting on August 8.

The Patriots and the Lions have a close relationship due to the Matt Patricia connection. Patricia was the Patriots’ defensive coordinator for several years before accepting the Lions’ head coaching job. During their joint practices, the Patriots will be reunited with several former players, including wide receiver Danny Amendola, defensive end Trey Flowers and defensive back Justin Coleman. During their training camp, the Patriots will also conduct joint training with the Tennessee Titans, whose head coach Mike Vrabel played linebacker for New England for eight years.

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