After his performance in Sunday’s 15-9 win over the Green Bay Packers, it’s hard not to talk about rookie safety Kerby Joseph.
Joseph was born and raised in Orlando, Florida before heading to Illinois for college. He committed to Illinois over offers from Mississippi State, Syracuse, and South Florida. In his four seasons, he recorded 116 total tackles, six pass defenses, five interceptions, one sack, and one forced fumble.
His senior year at Illinois was huge. He logged 57 total tackles, five interceptions, two fumble recoveries, and a sack. He was named first-team All-Big Ten, becoming the fifth safety from Illinois to receive those honors in the last 50 seasons. Joseph tied for fifth in the NCAA with five interceptions and earned a 90.4 overall PFF grade. That’s the highest grade by any FBS defensive back that season.
Joseph was selected in the third round, 97th overall in the 2022 NFL Draft by the Detroit Lions. He has definitely not been a disappointment for the team. The rookie has played in eight games so far this season, starting in the last five. So far this season he has tallied 26 total tackles, four pass defenses, two forced fumbles, two interceptions, and a quarterback hit. Most of those stats come from Sunday’s game verse the Green Bay Packers.
Rookie of the Week
The rookie was nominated for rookie of the week for his Week 10 performance. He currently owns a PFF defensive grade of 83.0, ranking him second among all safeties. While he should be a no-brainer, Sauce Gardner is also in the mix for Rookie of the Week. You can vote for who you think should win here.
Quarterback Jared Goff spoke after the game Sunday about how fun this game was for him to see so many guys making great plays.
“Yeah, it’s fun for me. It’s fun for me being in year seven now and feeling like the old guy and seeing these young guys make plays. We had two tight ends today have their first touchdown and like seeing their faces after that it’s – it’s what makes it all worth it. And yeah, then on defense, (Lions S) Kerby (Joseph) obviously, having a tremendous game. But we’ve seen that from him, he’s a great instinctive player. And it was only a matter of time before it showed up on the field and he got his chances and certainly made the most of them.”
Rookie Aidan Hutchison, who also recorded his first career interception on Sunday, spoke after the game on the defensive performance against Aaron Rodgers.
“Yeah, I mean we were playing lights out for the most part. I mean they were getting yards, but we were getting stops that we needed which is all that matters on defense. And (Lions S) Kerby (Joseph) was balling out. Kerby’s a turnover machine so we love it. And I got one of my own, so I will take it.”
Joseph was injured in Sunday’s win over the Packers during a collision with Jeff Okudah. He walked right off the field and to the locker room. On Monday, Coach Dan Campbell confirmed he is in concussion protocol.
“He’s in the protocol. But there again, we’re early in the process. We’re certainly hopeful. I feel like he falls in the same category as (Lions WR Amon-Ra St. Brown) Saint and (Lions TE) Brock Wright have over the last two weeks.”
Amon-Ra St. Brown and Brock Wright are two players that entered concussion protocol during a game and were both good to go for the next game. Hopefully, Joseph is in the same boat.
He seems to be in good spirits as he posted this on his Instagram on Monday:
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Maddy Miller – Detroit Lions Beat Reporter
On Twitter: @madelynvmillerr
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Kerby Joseph wins it for the Lions
Lions draft Kerby Joseph with the 97th overall pick
Photo Credit AP