There are a couple of reasons why Bradley Roby immediately felt comfortable when he learned he'd been traded from Houston to the New Orleans Saints.
First, Roby played at Ohio State and, arguably, no NFL team over the last five to 10 years has provided a more productive landing spot to former Buckeyes than New Orleans.
"As far as the Ohio State thing goes, it's dope for me," Roby said Wednesday. "It just makes it an easier transition."
Second, his offseason workout partners often include several Saints players, so he stepped into a locker room with some familiar faces.
"I could have gone to a team where I didn't know anyone, it could have been weird or whatever," the 29-year-old said. "But coming to this team and I know a lot of the guys already, it just seems like a seamless fit. We have high standards coming from Ohio State, and nothing changes."
The change for the Saints is this: New Orleans was able to add a high-level cornerback after training camp, one who has 10 interceptions, eight forced fumbles, five fumble recoveries and 75 passes defensed in 99 NFL games.
"I think it fits perfect," he said. "They play a lot of man coverage here, that's what I do. I've made a career on that. I play zone also, but I just love to press and get into guys at the line of scrimmage and bump and run early.
"That's what I like to do, I think that's a strength of mine, I think it fits well and I'm excited for sure."
The 5-foot-11 Roby participated in his first practice Wednesday, and likely not one day too soon for the Saints. Cornerback Marshon Lattimore (hand) and defensive back P.J. Williams (back) didn't practice Wednesday, and cornerback Ken Crawley already is out with a hamstring. Rookie Paulson Adebo, a standout throughout training camp and preseason, and veteran Desmond Trufant, who was signed Sept. 7 – the day before the Roby trade – played impactful snaps against Green Bay in the season opener. Adebo produced one of New Orleans’ two interceptions against the Packers.
"I've got a lot of guys helping me to pick up the defense," Roby said. "Every day it's going to be better, keep studying."
Roby said he was happy upon learning he'd been traded from the Texans to the Saints.
"As soon as I heard the Saints, I just thought about all the guys I know here, we train in the offseason – (receiver) Mike Thomas, Marshon, (running back) Alvin (Kamara)," he said. "As soon as I heard that and heard the Saints, I was just like, 'What a blessing, because we're playing for something here.' And it's not that Houston's not playing for anything, it's just a different level right now, in my opinion.
"So for me to be at this point in my career, my eighth year, I won a Super Bowl before (with the Broncos in 2015) and I just want to try to get another one. As soon as I heard the news, I was like, 'Hell yeah, let's go.'
"It was weird, man. When they first told me (about the trade), the whole day I just felt weird. I was just like, 'Dang, is this for real?' But I know it's part of the game, and I think it helped both teams. I think it helped Houston in what they're doing, I think it helped here just to add on to the guys that are already here.
"It was weird at first, but life is all about change. Every year I try to get better and do different things. I kind of just go with the flow, kind of like Bruce Lee. Flow like water, that's how I take it."