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32 Days to Purdue Football: Joseph Jefferson II

As we enter the last month without Boilermakers football until next year, we highlight a young safety with a high ceiling.

Syndication: Journal-Courier Alex Martin/Journal and Courier / USA TODAY NETWORK

Joseph Jefferson II - RS Freshman

Indianapolis, Indiana - Pike High School

Defensive Back

6’0” - 190 lbs.

2023 Projection: Special teams duty, rotational safety

The homegrown Joseph Jefferson II is a former three-star recruit who was sort of a late bloomer when it came to receiving scholarship offers; each of his offers came within three months of the early signing day. He received his offer from Purdue in late November of 2021, committing thirteen days later and signing his letter of intent three days after that.

Jefferson saw action in just one game (Indiana State) as a freshman, allowing him to maintain a redshirt. With a slew of talented defensive backs ahead of him, I’d say he’s likely to see most of his field time in the special teams unit with some rotational position play late in games. The good news for the young man: his new head coach is a secondary expert and he has four years to learn from Ryan Walters and company.

He’s got the length you’d want for either a corner or safety (though, barring anything crazy, he’s a true safety and has been taking reps there in practice) and has put on about five pounds since high school. Should he be able to continue to put on healthy weight while maintaining speed, the former Pike High School standout has a bright future under this new defensive coaching staff.

What I like from his high school film: he doesn’t shy away from contact, so adding that weight will be crucial to maintain his punishing style of play at the collegiate level. I really like what I see in his ability to change direction and with his ball skills. His movement is very fluid and I believe he has the ability to fight for a starting spot midway through his third year, he’s just still raw and inexperienced.

Jefferson is certainly one to keep an eye on in the not-so-distant future.