Drafted: ROUND: 3 - Pick Number: 97 (DET)
Draft Profile: BioKerby Joseph was a two-way player at high school and in doing so had four interceptions, 7.0 TFLs, plus five touchdown receptions as a senior. He was a three-star recruit who ultimately joined Illinois after receiving offers from Mississippi State, Syracuse, USF, and FAU.
After playing sparingly as a freshman Joseph had an impact as a sophomore where he played in 12 games and started two at safety and logged 17 tackles, 1.0 TFL, three PBUs on the season.
In 2020 his season was limited as he played on only 69 snaps, however in 2021 in his second junior year he exploded on the scene -- on 716 snaps he chalked up 57 tackles, 1.0 TFL, a sack, five interceptions, two pass breakups, three forced recoveries, and a 66.2 QB rating when targeted. At the end of the season, he was awarded with an All-Big Ten first-team spot, an AP All-Big Ten first-team selection, a PFF All-America second team place, and PFF All-Big Ten second-team selection.
Scouting Report: Strengths
- Had an incredible season in 2021 where he had a breakout season and developed into a lockdown DB
- Ball hawking safety with decent speed and agility who excels in press coverage but is equally adept playing in a zone system
- Has an NFL frame with strong hands, the ability to close quickly on underneath routes, and the size to tackle with a thump.
- Quicker than he is fast but has a burst to close in zone coverage and plays physical at the line in man.
- Has the ability to lock down and play on an island like an elite corner
- While built more like a cornerback than a safety, he has the vision, range, hitting ability, and ball skills teams want at free safety in the pass-heavy NFL
- Is an elite run defender who wraps up nicely and regularly knives into the backfield to blow up running plays
- Adds versatility as a blitzer - has had success getting to the QB
- Good strength to tackle. Plays with high energy and is a tough-minded overachiever.
- Natural and instinctive in coverage where he reads the QB eyes allowing him to successfully break on the route
- Good instincts and anticipation reads and reacts with discipline. Dangerous with the ball in his hands.
- Closes to the ball very well and possesses the hands to snatch throws away from his frame.
- Exceled at the Senior Bowl practices and established himself as one of the best DBs
Scouting Report: Weaknesses
- Has had only one elite level of play -- in 2021 - has had only two starts in the previous three years
- Is good, but not an elite athlete - similarly has good not great speed
- Needs to get stronger can be too easily lost in the trash.
- Not a naturally explosive player and needs to show better bend and flexibility in his drops - can play too high.
Scouting Report: SummaryJoseph had an incredible 2021 season where he put numbers placing at the elite category of all DB's in college football. There's no doubting Joseph's skills on the field -- he can cover like a shutdown corner while playing the run in the box like a linebacker, he has however only had one elite season under his belt and his previous seasons were underwhelming due to him being given only two starts. He also will need to demonstrate his speed at the combine to prove he will be able to cover pro receivers deep.
A year ago Kerby Jospeh wasn't even been talked about as a player who was going to be drafted - it's a notably different position now where the debate is - just how high will he go? We think he's done enough to be selected in the third round of the 2022 NFL Draft and has the ability to start as a rookie.
Kerby Joseph percentiles vs other Safety's (NFL Combine historically - higher value represents better perfomance)
How other scouting services rate Kerby Joseph (Overall Rank)
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