Hello Packer fans! If you're reading this your team has drafted defensive tackle Jerel Worthy, and we'd like to commend your team's front office on such a splendid pick. I speak for many Michigan State fans when I say that Jerel was a pleasure to watch over the past few years, and we hope he will be for years to come, so long as it's not against the Lions. Here's a little more on Jerel.
THE COLLEGE YEARS
Mr. Worthy was a three-star defensive tackle by Rivals coming out of Wayne High School in Huber Heights, Ohio; he was ranked as the 53rd best defensive tackle that year and the 30th best player in Ohio. His first year at Michigan State was a redshirt year. In his second year he started in 11 of 13 games, recorded 9 tackles for a loss and 4.5 sacks. His performance earned him Freshman All-America honors from several publications, including the Sporting News, Rivals, and the Football Writers Association of America to name a few.
He started all 13 games his sophomore year and had about the same production -- 40 tackles, 8 tackles for a loss and 4 sacks; all these totals were tops for defensive linemen on the Spartans and the sacks total was at tie for team best. He was honorable mention All-Big Ten by both the coaches and media.
His junior year his production ticked down slightly, mainly due to being on the receiving end of many a double team. He still recorded 30 tackles, 10.5 of them for a loss, as well as 3.5 sacks. Not only was he on the All-Big Ten first team, he was on several All-American first teams, including the Associated Press, the American Football Coaches Association, and the Sporting News. Pretty durned good, I'd say.
Two assets immediately come to mind when I think about Jerel. The first is his first step -- it's a quick one, and it's often allowed him to get leverage on defenders and plug holes. The second is his ability to jump the snap; while I don't know how well that ability will translate to the NFL, when both those strengths come together this happens:
Really, watch that whole video if you want the greatest overview of Worthy's play, good and bad.
Speaking of bad, the biggest black mark against Jerel is that his motor doesn't run at 100% all the time. It's true there were a couple games last season where he didn't look as dominant as one would hope, but I'd chalk that up to double teams, and most players aren't going to play at top speed all the time. I wouldn't be too concerned about it.
Congrats! Worthy's had no character issues at MSU, so not only are you getting a good egg, you're getting one heck of a player. Even if he doesn't start right away (and even if he doesn't, it's hard not to see him constantly in a playing rotation), he can be a force on special teams, as he's blocked three kicks in his career. Once again, well done on a good pick, and hopefully you'll enjoy Jerel for years to come. I know I did.