2021 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Kelvin Joseph

  • Kelvin Joseph, 6-1/197

  • Cornerback

  • Kentucky

  • Kelvin Joseph Scouting Report
    By Charlie Campbell

  • Talented cover corner
  • Excellent skill set; fast, big, athletic
  • Short-area burst
  • Eats up ground in a blur
  • Strong and tough
  • Physical jam to reroute
  • Tough press-man corner
  • Twitchy athlete
  • Can play off-man coverage
  • Good run defender
  • Willing to hit and tackle
  • Good ball skills; plays the ball well
  • Nice hands
  • High points the ball well
  • Confident, cocky corner mentality
  • Lots of upside

  • Weaknesses:
  • One-year wonder
  • Undisciplined
  • Immature
  • Character concerns
  • Lacks eye discipline
  • Could lack the discipline for zone
  • Prone to penalties
  • Needs to improve route recognition

  • Summary: The Louisiana native Joseph started out his career at LSU, which is one of the programs that claims the title of “DB-U”. Joseph was a backup as a freshman in 2018 before landing a suspension for the Tigers’ bowl game. After that season, he transferred to Kentucky, where he was forced to sit out 2019. Joseph had a mixed 2020 season for the Wildcats while totaling 25 tackles, four interceptions and one pass broken up. He played well against Alabama and Tennessee, but turned in ugly performances against Ole Miss and Florida. In particular, Gators tight end Kyle Pitts used and abused Joseph. Joseph was benched at times by the Kentucky coaches, and after the Florida game in late November, Joseph decided to opt out the remainder of the season.

    For the NFL, Joseph has an excellent skill set with size, speed, athleticism and strength. He is a tough press-man corner who possesses a strong jam at the line of scrimmage to reroute receivers and disrupt timing routes. Joseph uses the sideline well, and his size and physicality help him to outfight receivers for jump balls. With good hands and ability to track the ball, Joseph shows impressive ball skills and is a threat to create interceptions.

    On top of Joseph being big and strong, he is fast with excellent speed for a big corner. Joseph closes fast and eats up ground in a blur. His quick-twitch athleticism gives him the ability to handle off-man coverage via his rapid reacting to run with receivers out of their breaks.

    On the negative side, Joseph is raw and needs lots of development, which isn’t surprising considering he is a one-year wonder. He is undisciplined and will bite on fakes. Kyle Pitts’ route-running embarrassed Joseph and showed that he lacks eye discipline. Joseph could lack the discipline to play zone coverage, and he will need to be coached up on route recognition. Penalties and immaturity are a problem for Jospeh, but he does have that cocky, confident man-corner mentality.

    As a worker and in terms of football character, Joseph needs to mature and become a professional. He could go as high as late in the first round in the 2021 NFL Draft, but he could also last until somewhere in Round 3.

    Player Comparison: Bradley Roby. Coming out of Ohio State, Roby had a great skill set with size, speed and athleticism, but he lacked discipline and gave up some big plays. Roby was torched by Wisconsin’s Jared Abbrederis, similar to Joseph’s games against Florida and Ole Miss. After some growing pains, Roby became a competent NFL starter. Joseph could follow a similar path if immaturity doesn’t derail his potential for a pro career.


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