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WVU safety Karl Joseph’s high football character could interest Redskins

Mar 25, 2016, 12:41 PM EDT


Redskins draft countdown

The NFL draft is 34 days away and there is plenty of speculation as to what players Scot McCloughan will select to wear the burgundy and gold. Between now and the draft we’ll look at some of the players who might be of interest to the Redskins and discuss how he might fit in Washington.

Karl Joseph
West Virginia

Height: 5-10
Weight: 205
40-yard dash:

Projected draft round: 2-3


What they’re saying

Fiercely competitive with immense football character. Different teams may have differing opinions of how best to utilize him, but Joseph has proven he can make plays in man coverage or play disciplined enough to be trusted on the back. His average size and subsequent durability will concern some teams due to his aggressive, attacking demeanor; however, Joseph is talented enough to become an early starter and high­-impact safety down the road if the medicals check out.

Lance Zierlein,

How he fits the Redskins: I don’t think I have to go into much detail about the Redskins’ need at safety, which is entering its 10th year. Earlier this week Jay Gruden called it an area of “great concern”. They are taking a safety by committee approach right now but they would like to solidify the position and Joseph could be the guy to do that.

When you see the words “immense football character” in the evaluation above, you immediately think of the kind of player that Scot McCloughan likes to collect. Joseph graduated from high school early and enrolled at West Virginia so he could participate in spring practice. He won the starting job and as a true freshman he was the Mountaineers’ defensive player of the year with 104 tackles, seven for loss, two interceptions, and three forced fumbles.

He could have entered the 2015 draft but he decided to stay. His “reward” was a season-ending knee injury he suffered in a non-contact portion of practice.

The injury deprived West Virginia of plays like this one:

Potential issues: Obviously the knee will have to check out. Joseph did not participate in any combine drills, certainly understandable after having suffered the injury in early October. It seems reasonable that he could be ready for training camp, which would start almost 10 months after the injury.

At 5-10, 205, his size is another concern. McCloughan would probably prefer a safety with more length. And there are legitimate concerns that the impact of his hard hits could shorten his career.

Bottom line: Mike Mayock called Joseph a “poor man’s Earl Thomas” and we know how McCloughan likes Legion of Boom style defensive backs. If his knee checks out the presence of a high-character top performer at a position of need would put him under serious consideration by McCloughan if he’s there in the second round. If he is there in the third you could probably measure him for a Redskins uniform.

But with the need for safeties outstripping the supply, the chances that Joseph will make it to the latter stages of the second round seem iffy. We will see how things shake out.

Previously in Redskins draft countdown:

  1. ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© - Mar 25, 2016 at 1:41 PM

    Doesn’t help the odds of Joseph making it to 53 when Mayock is pushing him.


    • thirdistheworrd - Mar 25, 2016 at 3:24 PM

      Trans care about their own personnel evaluators, nor media personalities. Do you think Obama tunes in to MSNBC before making decisions? I think size + injury = Karl makes it to the end of round 2 easily.

  2. robert herrera - Mar 25, 2016 at 3:51 PM

    I believe picking Karl Joseph in the 3 rd or 4th round would be fine. Karl is not the only safety on board, if there is someone else like jeron kearse, then the Redskins should make a pick.

    • goback2rfk - Mar 25, 2016 at 7:37 PM

      Karl is the next Reed Doughty. I am not impressed.

    • Trey Gregory - Mar 26, 2016 at 4:23 AM

      He would be an amazing fourth round pick because he has second round talent. He’s not going to be there in the fourth, and probably not the third, so that’s kind of a silly thing to say. That’s like saying, “it would be good to take Carson Wentz in the 6th round.” No kidding.

      Maybe Joseph falls a little because of his injury. But too many teams need young safties. Someone will swoop him up.

  3. robert herrera - Mar 25, 2016 at 9:04 PM

    To whom ever reads this, as I said before this one of the best safeties to draft in 2016. The other guy is jeron kearse. After the 21 pick, I hope the Redskins pick one of these safeties. Archives

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