Troy’s Top 10 Impact Players of 2013: Tyler Roberts

Published 12:05 pm Sunday, July 7, 2013

This is a series of 10 Troy players to watch in 2013. Their successes/failures will play a big impact on the Trojans’ season.

10. Camren Hudson

9. Bryan Holmes

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8. Antonio Gillespie

7. B.J. Chitty

6. Chris Davis

5. Deon Anthony

4. Mark Wilson

3. Eric Thomas

2. Tyler Roberts

Tyler Roberts opened the season last year as a surprise starter after Jacoby Thomas received much of the hype as Troy’s bandit linebacker.

Roberts, now a redshirt sophomore, has moved down a level under Wayne Bolt. While he was technically a glorified defensive end last year, he has DE next to his name to make it official in 2013.

Bolt said in the spring that Roberts has done very well playing with his hand in the dirt and will provide Troy will some much needed speed on the edge. Remember, Troy has a history of turning unknown ends into pros (DeMarcus Ware, Mario Addison, etc.).

Roberts will play a vital role in the transformation of Troy’s defense in 2013. In the new 4-2-5 system, Roberts will be expected to get into the backfield and disrupt the play. The beauty of the 4-2-5 is that the defensive line and linebacker can work separately from the defensive backs. The front six can align to stop the run while the back five can play for the pass. The one constant I have seen in reading about the 4-2-5 is the need for a quick, agile defensive end, one that can defend with athleticism. Roberts has those tools.

Roberts had 35 tackles last season, 6.5 for loss. He also recorded a pair of sacks and I’m sure that’s a number Troy coaches want to see rise in 2013.