Huge reach for Raiders to draft Karl Joseph at No. 14

By Michael Dixon
Sep 5, 2015; Morgantown, WV, USA; West Virginia Mountaineers safety Karl Joseph stands in the secondary during the fourth quarter against the Georgia Southern Eagles at Milan Puskar Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports

The Oakland Raiders made a sizable reach with the 14th pick of the 2016 NFL Draft, taking West Virginia defensive back Karl Joseph with the 16th pick.

It’s not that Joseph has no talent or will be a bust. He was a complete ball hawk in his senior season at West Virginia, intercepting five passes. In total, he picked off nine passes in four years with the Mountaineers.

The problem is that if Joseph was their target, the Raiders likely could have traded down to get him and acquired a few more picks. As a point of reference, Bleacher Report’s Matt Miller had projected Joseph as the second pick of the second round (33rd overall) in his final mock draft.

Still, while he was a reach, it’s unlikely that Joseph will be eased into things. He joins a secondary that lost Charles Woodson to retirement last year. Currently, the team’s starting safeties are with Larry Asante and Reggie Nelson, so Joseph will have an immediate spotlight on him.