Karl Joseph

Steelers Re-Sign S Karl Joseph

Karl Joseph bounced on and off the Steelers’ active roster last year, but the team will give the former first-round pick another shot. Joseph agreed to re-sign with the Steelers on Thursday, Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets. The Steelers have announced the one-year agreement.

The ex-Raiders first-rounder and Browns starter played just two games as a Steeler last season, being involved in a few promotions from Pittsburgh’s practice squad. But Joseph has a year in the Steelers’ system and 49 career starts to his credit.

Las Vegas cut the veteran safety just before last season, leading the West Virginia alum to the Steelers on a practice squad agreement. Joseph made just two tackles in his first Steelers season, which came after he registered 67 in 14 games (eight starts) with the playoff-bound Browns.

Joseph has intercepted five passes in his career and recovered five fumbles, but the one-time top prospect has never been able to establish himself as an upper-echelon starter. As a result, a lucrative free agency deal has eluded him. The Raiders passed on Joseph’s fifth-year option, and he has now signed one-year deals during each of the past three offseasons.

The Steelers have been monitoring the safety market for a bit now. Longtime starter Terrell Edmunds hit free agency earlier this month but has not signed anywhere. Pittsburgh has been unusually active on the market this year, adding multiple new O-linemen (James Daniels and Mason Cole) and adding likely starters on defense (Myles Jack, Levi Wallace). Mitchell Trubisky headlined Pittsburgh’s March spending. Joseph does not appear to be the answer alongside Minkah Fitzpatrick, but the 29-year-old defender certainly makes sense as a backup for the talented defense.

NFL COVID-19 List Updates: 1/1/22

Here are the New Year’s Day activations from and placements on the reserve/COVID-19 lists:

Atlanta Falcons

Baltimore Ravens

Carolina Panthers

Cincinnati Bengals

Dallas Cowboys

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

Las Vegas Raiders

Los Angeles Chargers

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

  • Activated from reserve/COVID-19 list: G Oli Udoh

New England Patriots

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

New York Jets

  • Activated from reserve/COVID-19 list: CB Bryce Hall

Philadelphia Eagles

Pittsburgh Steelers

San Francisco 49ers

Seattle Seahawks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

Steelers Activate QB Ben Roethlisberger

Some good news for the Steelers’ offense as the team prepares for tomorrow night’s game against the Chargers. ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports (via Twitter) that quarterback Ben Roethlisberger will be activated from the reserve/COVID-19 list and is “is on track to play Sunday night.” The news was first reported by Steelers PR man Burt Lauten (on Twitter).

The Steelers have made the move to activate their 18th-year passer, indeed putting Big Ben in line to play Sunday night in Los Angeles. The Steelers also promoted safety Karl Joseph, who stands to help a team missing Minkah Fitzpatrick, who remains on the COVID list. Kevin Dotson is now on IR as well. Dotson, who moved into Pittsburgh’s starting lineup after mixing in as a rookie, is dealing with a high ankle sprain.

Big Ben landed on the reserve/COVID-19 list last weekend, forcing him to miss Sunday’s game against the Lions. The 39-year-old passer had self-reported COVID symptoms to the team and subsequently tested positive for the virus. Roethlisberger has reportedly passed the NFL’s COVID-19 protocols, and while he’s not traveling with the team to California, he is on a separate flight and intending to play on Sunday.

The Steelers offense predictably struggled last weekend against the lowly Lions. While backup QB Mason Rudolph did pass for 242 yards, he only completed 30 of his 50 passing attempts, and that came with an extra period of play before the eventual tie. Rudolph also tossed a touchdown and an interception.

Prior to last weekend, the Steelers had won four in a row to bring themselves squarely into the AFC playoff picture. During that streak, Roethlisberger — whose early-season struggles prompted speculation about his job security — was over 200 passing yards per game, had thrown six TDs, zero interceptions, and posted a 104.6 QB rating (h/t Aditi Kinkhabwala of the NFL Network on Twitter).

Minor NFL Transactions: 10/9/21

Here is Week 5 Saturday’s minor move spree:

Arizona Cardinals

Atlanta Falcons

Baltimore Ravens

Carolina Panthers

Cleveland Browns

Dallas Cowboys

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

  • Promoted: TE Shane Zylstra

Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

Kansas City Chiefs

Los Angeles Chargers

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

New England Patriots

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

New York Jets

Philadelphia Eagles

Pittsburgh Steelers

San Francisco 49ers

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

Washington Football Team

Wednesday NFL Transactions: AFC North

Following the 53-man roster cutdown deadline Tuesday, many teams will make slight tweaks to their rosters. In addition to waiver claims, teams can begin constructing their 16-man practice squads today. These BengalsBrownsRavens and Steelers moves are noted below.

Here are Wednesday’s AFC North transactions, which will continue to be updated throughout the day.

Baltimore Ravens

Signed to practice squad:

Cincinnati Bengals

Claimed:

Released:

Waived:

Signed to practice squad:

Cleveland Browns

Signed:

Placed on IR:

Signed to practice squad:

Pittsburgh Steelers

Signed to practice squad:

Raiders Cut Karl Joseph

The Raiders are releasing Karl Joseph (Twitter link via Vincent Bonsignore of the Review Journal). The safety returned to the Raiders earlier this year, but it proved to be a short-lived reunion.

I never wanted to leave,” Joseph said earlier this year. “This is my home. I was drafted here. I feel like I was born to be a Raider.”

Joseph would’ve still been a Raider in 2020 if the team hadn’t declined his fifth-year option. The 2016 first-rounder spent last year with the Browns and started eight of 14 games. He finished with his worst ever Pro Football Focus assessment. PFF viewed Joseph as better during his Raiders seasons and slotted him outside the top 70 safeties in 2020. The 27-year-old (28 in September) made 67 tackles, intercepted a pass and recovered two fumbles with Cleveland. He also added a playoff interception in Kansas City.

It felt like the right decision was to come back and help finish what I started here and be a part of that,” Joseph said back in April. “All the pieces are there. I think we’re ready to win. So whatever I’m going to need to do to help us win, that’s what I am going to do.”

Joseph won’t get that opportunity. Instead, he could be en route to his third pro team.

Extra Points: Joseph, Eagles, Bengals

Karl Joseph is back with the Raiders. The safety agreed to a deal earlier this week to return to the team that drafted him in the first-round back in 2016, and as he tells it, he never wanted to leave. “I never wanted to leave,” Joseph said, via Vincent Bonsignore of the Las Vegas Review Journal. “This is my home. I was drafted here. I feel like I was born to be a Raider.” Joseph would’ve still been a Raider in 2020 if the team hadn’t declined his fifth-year option.

Instead, he ended up signing a one-year contract with the Browns. Clearly there were no hard feelings about the option getting declined, because he’s back with Jon Gruden now. “It felt like the right decision was to come back and help finish what I started here and be a part of that,” he explained. “All the pieces are there,” Joseph raved. “I think we’re ready to win. So whatever I’m going to need to do to help us win, that’s what I am going to do.” We still haven’t gotten the financial terms on Joseph’s new Raiders deal, so those will be interesting to see.

Here’s more from around the league on a quiet Sunday night:

  • Two members of the Eagles’ offensive line seem to be progressing well from major injuries. Tackle Lane Johnson had ankle surgery in December, and is apparently almost back to full strength. “Going good. Still in rehab,” Johnson said, via John McMullen of SI.com. “I’m running, moving around well so probably a month out from being cleared fully.” Johnson made three straight Pro Bowls from 2017-19, and his absence was sorely felt last year. Guard Brandon Brooks, also a Pro Bowler from 17-19, missed all of 2020 with a torn Achilles, and Johnson said he’s making good progress as well. “I know he’s excited coming off that injury last year,” Johnson explained of his line-mate. “As far as being cooped up and ready to go, man, he’s a ball of energy.” Whether it’s Jalen Hurts or someone else under center, the Eagles’ pass protection should be a lot better than it was in 2020.
  • The Bengals are bringing back a familiar face, but not a player. The team is hiring Louie Cioffi as a defensive quality control coach, via Josh Alper of ProFootballTalk.com. That’s significant since Cioffi was in the building as a defensive assistant and defensive backs coach from 1997-2010. His tenure with the team preceded that of even Marvin Lewis, and continued through much of Lewis’ time there. He’s been a DBs coach for numerous teams around the NFL since leaving the Bengals, and is one of few people who can say they spent time in both the recent ill-fated spring leagues, the AAF and XFL.

Raiders Bring Back S Karl Joseph

Karl Joseph will return to the Raiders. The former Oakland first-round pick, who landed in Cleveland last year, agreed to terms with his former team Friday after trekking to Las Vegas for a visit.

The Raiders drafted Joseph in the 2016 first round and used him as a starting safety for most of his tenure. Joseph, who also visited the Steelers this offseason, will return to help fill the Silver and Black fill a major need.

This move comes nearly two years after the Raiders passed on Joseph’s 2020 option season. The West Virginia product’s initial Raiders run ended earlier, with a foot injury halting his 2019 season midway through. Joseph will now rejoin Johnathan Abrams on the Raiders’ defensive back line. These two started in Week 1 of the 2019 season, but Abrams’ season-ending injury that night made he and Joseph’s on-field time together brief.

Last season, Joseph started eight Browns games — out of the 14 he played — and finished with his worst Pro Football Focus assessment. PFF viewed Joseph as better during his Raiders seasons but slotted him outside the top 70 safeties last season. The 27-year-old defender made 67 tackles, intercepted a pass and recovered two fumbles with Cleveland. He added a playoff interception in Kansas City, doing so after spending time on the Browns’ reserve/COVID-19 list late last season.

Las Vegas may still be in play for a safety in the draft, but Joseph minimizes that need. The Raiders have experienced rampant trouble in pass defense over the past decade and change; their issues last season led Jon Gruden to fire DC Paul Guenther. Gus Bradley will call the shots next season, giving Joseph a third defensive system in three seasons and a fourth over the past five. PFF graded Joseph as a top-25 safety in 2018, his most recent full season with the Raiders, and he has started 41 games with team. It should be expected he will add to that total in 2021.

S Karl Joseph Visiting Raiders

Karl Joseph could be reuniting with the Raiders. NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport reports (via Twitter) that the free agent safety is visiting with the Raiders tonight. Vincent Bonsignore of the Las Vegas Review-Journal describes the visit as “a “weighing all options” sort of deal,” with the Raiders evaluating their options prior to the draft (Twitter link).

Joseph signed a one-year deal with the Browns last offseason, and he proceeded to have a bounce-back season for his new squad. He appeared in 14 regular season games (eight starts), compiling 67 tackles, two tackles for loss, four passes defended, and one interception. He also came up big in the playoffs for the Browns; he recovered a botched Steelers snap for a touchdown, and he intercepted a pass by Chiefs quarterback Chad Henne. This was an improvement from his final season with the Raiders in 2019, when Joseph was limited to nine games due to a foot injury.

The Raiders selected Joseph with the 14th-overall pick in the 2016 draft, and he earned All-Rookie Team honors after starting nine games during his rookie campaign. He started 15 games in 2017, compiling a career-high 79 tackles to go along with one sack and one interception. The defensive back seemed to fall out of favor once Jon Gruden was hired, as he was limited to only 11 snaps through the first eight weeks of the 2018 campaign. He ended up starting during the second half of that season, but his fifth-year option was predictably declined during the offseason, spelling the end of his tenure with the team.

Joseph would probably have a chance to play in Las Vegas, as he’d compete with the likes of Dallin Leavitt and Jeff Heath for snaps. We heard recently that the veteran had at least one other suitor in the Steelers.

Steelers Host S Karl Joseph

Following one season in Cleveland, Karl Joseph could find his next opportunity with another AFC North squad. Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports (via Twitter) that the free agent safety visited the Steelers.

The Raiders’ 2016 first-round pick earned PFWA All-Rookie Team honors as a rookie, and he had a solid campaign as a sophomore in 2017. However, he bounced in and out of the starting lineup in 2018, and the Raiders decline his fifth-year option prior to the 2019 campaign. That 2019 season ended up being Joseph’s final year with the organization. and he was limited to only nine games after suffering a foot injury.

He signed a one-year deal with the Browns last offseason, and he proceeded to play 14 games (eight starts) for his new squad. He finished the year having compiled 67 tackles, two tackles for loss, four passes defended, and one interception. He also came up big in the playoffs for the Browns; he recovered a botched Steelers snap for a touchdown, and he intercepted a pass by Chiefs quarterback Chad Henne.

While Joseph probably wouldn’t push either Minkah Fitzpatrick or Terrell Edmunds for playing time, he could serve a role as a solid backup safety. Pittsburgh’s 2020 backups, Sean Davis and Jordan Dangerfield, are both free agents.