2016 NFL Draft: early look at West Virginia’s Karl Joseph


West Virginia’s Karl Joseph is an undersized but playmaking safety prospect. If he was a few inches taller we might be talking about him as a first round prospect. However, that doesn’t mean he won’t be able to find a role in the NFL.

Despite his size, Joseph is a hard-nosed player who isn’t afraid to play at the line of scrimmage or support the run. His explosive short-area burst allows him to quickly close on the ball carrier and make plays sideline to sideline.

This clip shows the type of toughness Joseph possesses:

West Virginia uses Joseph both in deep coverage and as a slot corner. When in the slot, Joseph shows the ability to blitz off the corner and generate pressure on the quarterback. He is relentless in his pursuit of the football which helps him when blitzing or closing the back door against the run.

His one issue in the run game is that he tends to take poor angles when in space. There are times when the back is able to get him off balance and force a missed tackle.

Joseph brings added value on special teams where he does a good job covering kicks and punts.

In coverage, his size becomes an issue because he struggles challenging jump-ball situations. Bigger receivers and tight ends have a huge advantage over him which is something every offensive coordinator will notice.

This is why he appears destined to play the slot corner position at the next level. Playing this position plays to all of Joseph’s strengths which include run support, blitzing and able to stick with smaller receivers.

Joseph has value but with limited potential he’s more of a mid-round pick.

Current Draft Position- 4th Round