Raiders Coaching Staff “More Curious Than Positive” On Karl Joseph

On Friday morning, The Athletic’s Vic Tafur projected that Reggie Nelson, and not Karl Joseph, would be starting for the Raiders at safety this season.

On Friday afternoon, Tafur explained the reasoning behind the projection on his weekly State of the Nation podcast:

“To me the question mark is Karl Joseph… I’m not sure he’s got the stature to be the guy they want him to be in terms of he can’t really guard big tight ends. He hasn’t been the hard-hitting guy he was advertised in college, doesn’t make a lot of plays. So I just think the new staff is just a little curious about what exactly Karl Joseph does well and how he fits into the system.”

“I have a feeling they’re going to bring in a safety at some point. At this point I think the staff is more curious than positive in terms of what he brings.”

For what it’s worth, as a rookie Joseph did show flashes of the hard-hitting player he was in college, but seemed to fall off with the rest of the Raider roster in 2017.

But as uninspiring as 2017 was for Joseph, Nelson’s was far worse.

If Joseph was clowned on occasion, Nelson was a full-on three ring circus.

How anyone on the Raiders new coaching staff could watch Nelson’s 2017 film and walk away encouraged is beyond any reasonable explanation.

If Jack Del Rio was the reason Nelson went belly up in 2017, it’s only fair that Del Rio be the reason Joseph didn’t play well, too.

So do the right thing, Paul Guenther. But if you’re bound and determined to start a relic at safety this season, go get yourself a Charles Woodson.

twitter: @raidersbeat


23 thoughts on “Raiders Coaching Staff “More Curious Than Positive” On Karl Joseph

  1. Karl Joseph didn’t hit hard?? Did you even watch Raider games?? KJ punishes people!

    1. I swear these beat writers are half retards not only that but KJ had the best PFF rating out of any secondary player we had last year. It’s not his fault he played with trash like Reggie Nelson, Sean Smith and Amerson.

    2. No doubt. Joseph hit harder than anyone else in the backfield, and it’s not even close. I get the feeling they lighting a fire under his *** because they see bigger potential. I hope…

  2. Annnnnd yet another high round draft bust for McKenzie. This time a 1st rounder. Keanu Neal was such a safer pick at Safety than little Joseph. Oh look, Neal is one of the top Safeties in the league.

    1. No one said anything about KJ being a bust, and seeing that training camp hasn’t even started yet, this is just BS speculation when reality is that if the coaching staff felt they needed a safety, there was a near perfect prospect sitting there @10 AND 15. KJ will start, and hopefully @FS, the position RM drafted him to play. Not his fault KNJ/JDR decided to move him to SS. Btw, did you know KJ was the highest graded defender in the Raiders secondary last year according to PFF? By far too. Think twice before believing click bait articles like this.

  3. Nelson IMO is at the end of his career. The smart move would to move Joseph over to free safety and have Melifonwu start at strong safety. Melifonwu is big enough to cover tight ends. The Raider coaches made the mistake of trying him at cornerback against the Patriots last season. They almost ruined this player.

    1. Love the idea of having Melifonwu in the secondary, but we don’t even know if he translates to the NFL yet but he has the “stature”.

  4. According to Pro Football Focus he is the highest rated safety on the team after the addition of the free agents.

  5. I just don’t get how we spin the wheels on these older guys but not on younger safeties like Tyrann Mathieu, Tre Boston, Eric Reid, or Kenny Vacarro. We have a huge need at safety with 2 unproven guys with Melifonwu and Joseph but instead bring in older washed up guys like Nelson and Gilchrist? Granted I’m not sure Reid or Vacarro fit what we need since we need guys that are good in coverage and they are more adept at the hybrid roles supporting the run, but I’m sure they would be better than the 2 older player we signed.

    At the end of the day I’m just a fan on my couch and these guys get paid big money to make real decisions so I guess we’ll see how it plays out. I’ll always be loyal and support but it kind of leaves you scratching your head.

  6. This really surprises me. It’s true we don’t want Nelson patrolling the deep secondary, but I thought KJ was really going to be the answer for years to come. Hope the new staff can bring back his bite!!

  7. Nelson shouldn’t even make the 53 man roster let alone start. Dramatic drop off last season and now he is a year older and a year slower. Josephs doesn’t really have the height to guard tight ends consistently but s move to free safety would bring the best out of him. And his best is very good.

  8. What’s left out here is that Nelson became a pro bowl relic in Guenther’s defense. Grabbed 8 picks in said defense and yet you wonder why rumors are he’s going to start?!? Lol Forest for the 🌲 my man.

  9. If this is legit and this new staff really doesn’t like KJ, but passed on Darwin James sitting at 15 I’m going to be pissed. I hope this is all bs put out there to get the best out of KJ. Otherwise we have real problems the minute Nelson walks into the huddle.

    1. It’s BS. Whoever wrote this article is dense. To have the nerve to say that Joseph hasn’t been able to hit since he’s been in the NFL proves this writer is just talking out his ***. Any issues James had has nothing to do with hitting. And he’s been the best player on D outside of Mack, Irvin ,and Bowman.

  10. I fell for it. Clicked on another non-story, because I’m jonesing for the season. KJ will be starting. No doubt.

  11. This is BS. Anyone who watched the Raiders defense under KNJ knew that most of the players were either being used incorrectly, or the scheme was so bad it just made it look that way. KJ isn’t a SS, he’s much better suited as a free roaming FS who can diagnose plays from center field, where he can build up speed before landing a hit. The only reason PG would even consider starting RN over KJ is bc he knows exactly what he has in RN @FS, not so much with KJ. If anyone should be covering TE’s it’s Obi. I mean, that’s what he was drafted for, right? So, why force KJ into that role while trying Obi @CB? Have to ask KNJ/JDR that one.

  12. Didn’t Gruden comment on the number of safeties the team has at the Draft press conference. That’s why he let James go by. No-one chooses a mid thirty veteran over third year 1st round pick. What next Manuel vrs Carr for the QB starter?

  13. Gruden is a good coach and knows how to use his players talent. If Joseph doesn’t start it’s not his skill set it’s more of development. Joseph will be the starter at FS but Gruden doesn’t set players up to fail so Joseph will have to show a consistent development growth. That said I see Joseph starting week one, he is a darn good football player. I also see the raiders in a dogfight with LA Chargers for the AFC West.

  14. Man, I really will not take what any “talking head” says as “golden” truth or fact. It is rhetoric as best. When it comes to statements about what the coaching staff feels or is thinking, they have no clue but they do have to write or say something, so they do. They air their guesses as fact and some buy into it. Well it is good for starting a debate here, and that is what this board has become all about. Beat writers especially, should instead of being so **** opinionated and wrong, should spend their time gathering facts instead of trying to promote themselves. They would find overtime that the fans would come to trust them and would turn to them first for all things RAIDERZ. Instead they shoot off their mouths making wild guesses in hopes that one of the networks will notice.

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