Lions safety Kerby Joseph outlines biggest lesson he learned as a rookie

Kerby Joseph had a nice rookie season, but he revealed the biggest lesson he took from last year.
Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

Kerby Joseph came into the NFL with just one full season solely playing safety in college at Illinois under his belt. But he showed himself as a ballhawk in that one season, with five interceptions.

After Tracy Walker's Week 3 Achilles' tear pushed him into a starting job last year, Joseph did not disappoint. He finished fourth on the team with 82 total tackles, while grabbing four interceptions, with eight pass breakups and two forced fumbles. But there are certainly things he could have done better, in subtle ways that show up in the end results, and he now has the great benefit of experience.

Joseph made an appearance on SiriusXM NFL Radio's "Movin' The Chains" this week. He talked about his relationship with defensive coordinator Aaron Glenn, and trying to wind down during the offseason. But the most interesting part was when he revealed the biggest lesson he took out of his rookie season, however obvious it may seem.

Kerby Joseph outlines biggest lesson he learned during his rookie season


"You got to talk. Boy, I will tell you, if you don't talk, the stuff starts to go left," said Joseph. "My biggest thing I had to figure out was, just learning how to communicate with everybody, because nobody knew my voice, for real. So, I had to get the guys accustomed to my voice, hearing my voice on the field and stuff like that. Especially as a young player, as a rookie playing the position, playing the position I play, I have to be able to clean up mess and get stuff right. So, that was one thing I had to get myself ready for when I first started, when I played the Seahawks.""

Joseph's first start, Week 4 against Seattle as he said, was notable in that the Lions never forced the Seahawks to punt. Things could have only gotten better from there, and they did (and then some) as the Lions' defense became a key part of the team going 8-2 in its last 10 games last year. Joseph's growth was certainly a big part of that surge.

Joseph has fallen a little off the radar with the notable additions the Lions made to the secondary this offseason. But he should be a better player in his second season, as his experience meets the raw talent he clearly has.

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