Karl Joseph will get two more seasons with the Raiders.
The safety – who appeared on his way out during the 2018 season – played well over the second half of the 2018 season. Now the Raiders apparently are picking up the fifth-year option on the team’s first-round pick from the 2016 draft.
Joseph enters the final guaranteed year of his rookie deal, and now will be retained through a fifth season in 2020.
On Thursday, head coach Jon Gruden told reporters at the NFL combine in Indianapolis that Joseph “has asserted himself as a leader on our football team.” When asked if the Raiders would extend Joseph through 2020 by picking up his option, Gruden said: “I hope so. I’ll let (GM Mike Mayock) comment on that later, but it appears that way, yes.”
The Raiders have until May to officially pick up the option for 2020.
As Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle wrote, Joseph has made a comeback of sorts, having “moved from ignored to appreciated.”
As Branch noted, Joseph was a missing piece of the Oakland defense over the first six games of 2018, playing just 10 snaps. He had fallen from favor. But Joseph came on strong when given an opportunity, making eight starts and collecting 48 tackles, an interceptions and two sacks.
Still, Gruden said the Raiders are looking to add depth and strength to the safety position through the draft and free agency.
This post was originally posted at http://www.nbcbayarea.com/news/local/Joseph-Has-New-Life-With-Raiders-506551651.html.