ALAMEDA — If you need any glimpse as to what Raiders coach Jack Del Rio envisions out of first-round pick Karl Joseph, consider this: Del Rio hand-picked the No. 42 jersey Joseph will wear.
“There’s been a few good ones in that number,” Del Rio said Friday.
That list, especially at Joseph’s safety position, starts with Hall of Famer Ronnie Lott, the 49ers legend who also spent two year with the Raiders.
“It’s an honor,” said Joseph, who added that 42 was one of the numbers he was considering before his coach made the decision for him. “I’m going to try to represent it as best I can.”
Joseph was not on the field for the Raiders’ rookie mini camp and isn’t expected to participate in the team’s OTAs or team-wide mini camp over the next month or so. He’s in full rehabilitation mode following surgery in October to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee suffered during his season season at West Virginia.
“It’s tough just not being able to go out there and practice and learn the stuff, but I’m still learning in the meeting rooms,” Joseph said. “Right now I’m just focusing on rehabbing and getting healthy.”
Joseph and the Raiders expect him to be ready to go when training camp begins in late July.
“Everything’s on schedule right now,” Joseph said. “They’re not trying to let me go too hard, but the kind of person I am, I want to go and get it going. But I’m on pace for everything. Everything’s feeling good.”