The B.C. Lions may be one step closer to getting their 2021 first-round draft pick in training camp, after North Carolina State defensive end Daniel Joseph posted underwhelming results at the school’s recent NFL pro day.
Checking in at six-foot-two and 261 pounds, the Toronto native clocked a 5.08-second forty-yard dash with 1.80 seconds in the all-important ten-yard split. Joseph also ran a 7.45-second three-cone and 4.45-second short shuttle, while jumping 29 inches in the vertical and nine feet in the broad. He did not participate in the bench press due to a nagging pectoral injury.
Originally rated as a four-star recruit while finishing his high school career at Lake Forest Academy in Illinois, Joseph committed to Penn State and played sparingly in 32 games over three seasons. He registered 29 total tackles, five sacks, one pass knockdown, one forced fumble and a fumble recovery during his time with the Nittany Lions, before transferring to NC State as a senior in an attempt to elevate his NFL stock.
The gamble worked, as Joseph led the Wolfpack with 6.5 sacks while also recording 37 total tackles and 10 tackles for loss over his eight starts in 2020. He returned for a second senior season due to the NCAA’s COVID eligibility extension, adding five sacks to his improved resume along with 46 total tackles and nine tackles for loss.
After two productive seasons in the Atlantic Coast Conference, Joseph had been considered a fringe NFL prospect with the potential to sign an undrafted free agent deal. However, his testing numbers are likely to scare off some teams.
The Lions knew they would have to play the long game when they took Joseph with the fourth overall selection in 2021, but B.C. could be in line to get their prize after just one season of waiting.
B.C.’s revamped defensive line features two top-tier Canadian defensive ends already in David Menard and Mathieu Betts. Joseph could prove to be a dangerous third option, though he may also have the potential to wreak havoc along the interior thanks to his 36-inch arms.
Joseph’s brother, former first overall draft pick Faith Ekakitie, and cousin, former Lions’ first rounder Ese Mrabure, both played inside at the CFL level, though neither quite lived up to their lofty draft expectations. B.C. hopes that Joseph can break that mold and become a pass rushing threat.