Kerby Joseph maintains humbleness as he emerges as young star for the Lions

SideLion Report

Digging into the emerging playmaker for the Detroit Lions off the field, it’s evident Kerby Joseph is cut from different cloth.

Lions rookie safety Kerby Joseph has become a standout on the field, winning NFC Defensive Player of the Week for his performance in Week 9 against the Green Bay Packers. But fans may want to know more about his background as he becomes a building block for the team.

Born to Haitian parents, the path to the NFL was not a clear one for Joseph. It required patience, faith and a grateful attitude.

According to his high school football coach, Elijah Williams, Joseph’s limited scholarship offers were pulled for reasons outside his control. An initial Syracuse-commit, Joseph’s offer was pulled after a coaching change there.

Via Chris Hays of the Orlando Sentinel:

“Signing day, at 3 o’clock, Illinois called me and asked if Kerby signed,” Williams said. “I said, ‘No,’ and they asked if I thought he’d sign even though he had never been [to Illinois].

”I told Kerby, ‘Illinois said they’ll sign you right now,’ and he said, ‘Tell them I’m coming.’ ”

Joseph was barely on the national radar at the University of Illinois until his senior year, when he led the nation with five interceptions and finished as the highest-rated defensive back in the 2022 draft class according to Pro Football Focus.

Standing 6-foot-1 and weighing 205 pounds, Joseph has a ridiculous 6-foot-8-inch wingspan and 10 and 1/4-inch hands—measurements often used to describe NBA players.

Kerby Joseph maintains humble attitude as he becomes a young NFL star

Once it became clear he was heading towards the payday of an NFL draftee, Joseph’s humble attitude did not change. You have to love his mindset on one of his first purchases, as Hays noted:

“I got to get a dog. I want a lot of dogs, but I don’t know what dog is going to be the first dog I’m going to get,” Joseph said. “When everything is situated, like years down the road or maybe when I’m done, I’m gonna have a lot of dogs. I feel I’ll have like five.”

And for Joseph, the dogs symbolize the game he loves.

“Oh yeah, that’s why I want a whole bunch of dogs,” Joseph said. “I feel like a dog has to be disciplined but he’s also got to be mean. You can’t be nice all the time. You got to have some grit with you.”

Joseph was ready to start pushing for a role back in April, and now those “unteachable traits” are starting to show on the field as he has stepped up in the absence of Tracy Walker (torn Achilles).

This graphic, from the crew over at Woodward Sports Network, says it all to note Joseph’s Week 9 showing:

As Joseph gets ready celebrate his 22nd birthday next week (Nov. 14), we celebrate the humble young man and emerging Lions’ playmaker right now.

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