Kevin Kinder of Blue Gold News took some time out of his busy schedule to answer a few questions on Raiders new safety Karl Joseph.
Kinder on what Karl Joseph brings to the field:
Karl hits a ton. He's very aggressive and great in run support. He flies all over the field and can get to the sideline from the hash to break up passes. He's a great leader as well. I know that's probably not something that will come out much as a rookie, but he does all the right things.
On Joseph's pros and cons on the field:
Hitting ability is on par with Jack Tatum. Loves to play, and has zero fear sticking his face in the fan. There was some question about his pass coverage ability, but he seemed to answer that in the first part of last season - he was leading the nation in interceptions when he got hurt.
On Joseph's leadership skills:
He's not a big rah-rah guy, but he leads strongly by example. He is a guy the coaches can depend on to do all the right things and make the right decisions. Players respected him because he worked hard, was always there, and demonstrated the right way to do everything, from the classroom to the field.
On where he fits in a defense:
He was a free safety at first before moving down to a hybrid strong safety\outside LB spot in WVU's 3-3-5 defense. His hitting ability is unquestioned. I think he improved a lot in man coverage over the last year before he got hurt. Can he cover outside receivers man up in the NFL? That's the thing we'll have to see.
On love from West Virginia alum towards Joseph:
The leadership and his performance on the field are the two biggest reasons. He doesn't talk a lot - he just performs. And he was there to support every teammate. Just a great locker room guy and a great character guy, and when you couple that with the highlight reel hits he impresses in multiple ways.
On how WVU's defense after Joseph's injury:
The biggest measure of how good he was is that WVU's defense really took a hit when he went down last year. Prior to that, it might have been top 2-3 in the nation. WVU ran its entire scheme around him and his abilities.