An NFL Draft Blog

An NFL Draft Blog
Formerly known as the player rater.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Jerel Worthy- 2011 Draft Scouting Report

Normally, I wouldn't consider a Redshirt Sophomore like Michigan State's Jerel Worthy a legitimate threat to leave for the the draft. But there is one major reason that he may leave for the draft after only 2 years of football at Michigan State; he is a pretty polished prospect despite his lack of experience.

Worthy came onto Big Ten scene last year by posting 37 tackles, 4 sacks, and deflecting a solid 2 passes in the 2009 season. He was named first team All-Freshman by the Sporting News and he is probably the best Redshirt Sophomore defensive tackle prospect in this year's draft. 37 tackles was third in the FBS for freshman defensive tackles (behind Kawann Short's 47 and Scott Vallone's 40), and his 4 sacks were number one the FBS among defensive tackles.

Worthy has outstanding quickness off the ball, which helps him be an extremely disruptive penetrator. Worthy delivers a strong first punch and excellent quickness that can get offensive lineman off-balance with alarming speed. Worthy does an excellent job of of picking up in game snap counts and he possesses pretty good on field awareness. But, he is extremely prone to offsides penalties on the hard counts.

Worthy possesses excellent strength and on field toughness. Worthy's strength help's him make some of the most improbable arm tackles, grabbing players awkwardly by the shoulder but then reeling them into his torso. Worthy's strength also gives him the ability to make excellent tackles in traffic and penetrating interior lineman. Worthy possesses solid athleticism and the straight line speed to catch some running backs toward the outside. Worthy also has pretty good height for a defensive tackle (6'3), and he possesses adequate bulk.

Worthy definitely isn't a very instinctive lineman; but his instincts will improve over time. Currently, he takes mediocre angles to the ball carrier, he occasionally over commits on some play-actions and misdirections, and he is a little slow to react. With more experience, his instincts will improve, and his overall play will improve.

The main reason that I say Worthy possesses excellent polish is his solid array of moves. Worthy is advanced in his use of the swim move, helping him get to the interior of many lineman and tackling running backs and quarterbacks alike in their backfield. Worthy also has some development in his rip move, mostly due to his excellent strength. Though Worthy doesn't have much development in the spin move, he still is fundamentally sound in 3 of the 4 important penetration techniques necessary for defensive tackles; the bull rush, the swim move, and the rip move. Worthy is also pretty near his ceiling because he has excellent on field intensity; with this intensity and solid fundamentals, Worthy is a pretty solid defensive tackle who could leave for the NFL draft this season.

Here is a good look of Worthy in action

Jerel Worthy

Overall, Worthy's polish makes him an excellent, NFL ready defensive tackle despite his lack of experience. Mark Dantonio has clearly done an excellent job with Worthy; and I am sure Worthy will have solid instincts by the end of the season. He already has enough of everything else to be an extremely productive football player.

NFL Comparison: Amobi Okoye
Grade: 91
Projection: 90

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