Kelvin Joseph's redemption arc throws massive wrench in Cowboys' roster projections

Kelvin Joseph is making a charge for a spot on the Cowboys' 53-man roster.
Dallas Cowboys v Tennessee Titans
Dallas Cowboys v Tennessee Titans / Wesley Hitt/GettyImages

When you think about the Dallas Cowboys' biggest disappointments from last season, Kelvin Joseph and Jalen Tolbert were right up there.

Michael Gallup is a worthy shout, but fans understood he was coming off a torn ACL and likely needed a full season to regain his confidence.

Speaking strictly in terms of Joseph, though, the young cornerback often found himself in the crosshairs of Cowboys fans. After struggling in coverage, he was demoted to special teams and though he showed potential as a gunner, he was plagued by one too many boneheaded penalties.

Entering a make-or-break third year, the general consensus from fans was that Joseph would struggle to stick out in a loaded cornerback room.

In a redemption arc that not even the most optimistic Cowboys fans could have predicted, Joseph has put together an impressive camp and has been one of the team's top performers in preseason on the defensive side of the ball.

Has Kelvin Joseph secured a spot on Cowboys 53-man roster?

Joseph still has a long way to go in terms of winning back the trust of fans, but his preseason performance is admirable given where he started on the depth chart when the Cowboys first reported to Oxnard.

Following the arrival of Stephon Gilmore and emergence of rookie Eric Scott Jr., many talking heads wondered if Joseph was destined to get cut. Sure enough, Joseph faded to the background in Oxnard as Scott and other members of Dallas' secondary (and defense) took the spotlight.

That's not to say Joseph performed poor in camp, but he certainly didn't stick out like other young players on the roster. Incredibly, Scott has struggled in preseason, while Joseph has quietly been a menace in coverage.

In Week 1 against the Jaguars, Joseph didn't allow a catch on three targets. On Saturday vs the Seahawks, Joseph allowed one catch for 13 yards on three targets. He also forced a game-high two incompletions and has allowed a lowly 39.6 passer rating when targeted between the two games, per Pro Football Focus.

It's clear Joseph is more comfortable in the nickel relative to the outside, where he played his first two seasons before Dan Quinn shifted him inside at the start of OTAs. It's a testament to Quinn's ability to get the most out of his players, but Joseph deserves just as much credit as the defensive coordinator.

With Scott Jr. struggling to piggyback off a strong camp, Jourdan Lewis still on the PUP list, and Nahshon Wright dinged up with a high-ankle sprain, there's suddenly a clear path onto the 53-man roster for the young corner.

In fact, if the depth chart was based on current form, Joseph would be CB4 behind Trevon Diggs, Gilmore and DaRon Bland.

Anyone have that on their Bingo card when camp started?

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