ESPN draft analyst Louis Riddick released his one and only mock draft of 2016 a few days ago and he has the Pittsburgh Steelers selecting West Virginia safety Karl Joseph 25th overall in the first round.
Here is what Riddick had to say about Joseph.
“They (the Steelers) really need to address their secondary, they need to address it at corner and safety. This is my favorite player of all of the defensive players in this draft, Karl Joseph. Now, he’s coming off of an ACL, but I’ll tell you this, as far as what you ask safeties to do in the National Football League; cover, tackle, make adjustments, make plays on the ball, there’s nothing that this kid can’t do. The only reason why right now he’s not being talked about is one, because he’s hurt. I get it, but he’s going to fine. His combine re-check, from everything that I hear, was great. This kid can do it all. 5-9, 205 pounds, between 205 and 210 pounds, runs in the mid 4.5s. If he’s healthy, he will be one of the better safeties in this league I guarantee it.”
Riddick really makes a strong argument for Joseph being the Steelers first round selection this year even though there have been some reports that he might not be ready for the start of the 2016 regular season. With that said, the Steelers certainly have done their homework on Joseph as not only did they talk to him at his pro day, they also brought him to Pittsburgh for a pre-draft visit.
The Steelers haven’t selected a safety in the first round of the draft since they traded up to take Troy Polamalu 16th overall in 2003. Should that streak wind up ending this year, one could easily speculate that Joseph would be the player.
You can watch Riddick explain all of his first round mock in the video below.