Lions safety Kerby Joseph is ready to level up in his second season

After a nice rookie season, Lions safety Kerby Joseph is ready to level up this season.

With just one full college season at lIlinois as a full-time safety, Kerby Joseph was a considered a talented but raw prospect when the Lions took him in the third round (No. 97 overall) of the 2022 draft. When Tracy Walker suffered a torn Achilles in Week 3 last season, Joseph was pushed into a starting role and he delivered (82 total tackles, four interceptions, eight pass breakups, two forced fumbles).

Joseph intercepted Aaron Rodgers twice in the Lions' Week 9 win over the Packers last season, winning NFC Defensive Player of the Week for his effort. He also intercepted Rodgers in Week 18, but this offseason he lamented not picking off the now-former Packers quarterback a few more times--and upon review there was actually something to that.

New teammate C.J. Gardner-Johnson has not been shy to praise Joseph, and with the opportunity to do so again earlier this week he took it.

""Kerb’s one of those young guys, I’ll be honest with you, he’s gonna be one of the next best safeties in the league," Gardner-Johnson said "You gotta think about it. The tier of safeties that already went and got paid, he’s the next up. That young guy right there, true baller.""

Kerby Joseph not going to limit himself with "low" goals in his second season

Joseph spoke with reporters earlier this week. Via 97.1 The Ticket, he spoke about taking his game to a higher level this season.

"If I went hard last year," he said, "I gotta go even harder this year."I don’t like setting goals in this situation because I feel like it’s a limit on my capabilities, because I don’t even know my full potential yet," "So I wont say I'ma get four picks, five picks. I just say I’ma catch ‘em all.""

With literally two years solely playing safety under his belt, albeit with nine total interceptions over that span as an obvious ballhawk, it's safe to say Joseph has not reached his full potential. Last year's experience and fully trusting his instincts stand to put him position to make even more game-turning plays for the Lions' defense this year.

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