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NFL Draft Profile – WR Xavier Worthy

By Doug Orth | 4/22/24 |

Xavier Worthy


College: Texas
Height/Weight: 5' 11"/165
Hands: 8 3/4’’
Age: 21 (at the time of the 2024 season opener)

Important NFL Combine Numbers

40-Yard Dash: 4.21
Vertical Jump: 41’’
Broad Jump: 10’ 11’’
20-Yard Shuttle: N/A
3-Cone: N/A

College Production (Stats)

High-end NFL Player Comp(s): Darnell Mooney

Low-end NFL Player Comp(s): Rashid Shaheed

Best Scheme Fit: Classic field-stretching Z (flanker) receiver.

Best Team Fit(s): Commanders, Dolphins, Bills, Steelers, Panthers, Colts

Non-bolded times - Good examples of attribute
Bolded times - Average/poor examples of attribute

Position-Specific Attributes and Grades
Attribute Att Grade Scale Examples
Ball Tracking 8.5 10.0

2:29, 8:12, 18:40, 27:17


Contested Catch/Body Control 7.5 10.0

0:00, 2:09, 30:37

9:52, 22:05, 27:41, 36:58, 41:19

Hands 9.0 10.0

8:12, 14:51, 18:40, 25:56, 27:41, 30:37

6:15, 22:55, 32:05

Release 8.0 10.0

3:39, 6:43, 22:05

Route-Running 8.5 10.0

0:00, 1:18, 5:23, 14:42, 22:35, 24:15

24:32, 31:54, 32:05, 39:41, 43:01

Run After Catch 9.0 10.0

9:06, 11:52, 14:51, 20:53, 37:51, 38:25

3:22, 14:11, 16:56

Physicality/Competitiveness 6.0 8.0

16:56, 17:42, 29:31, 39:25, 39:48

21:10, 30:57, 34:52, 41:35

Separation 4.5 6.0

23:57, 26:14, 27:17, 44:04

22:05, 37:26, 43:01

Speed 4.0 4.0

8:12, 11:52, 23:57, 27:17, 38:25

Blocking 0.5 2.0

1:04, 1:12, 2:44, 13:55

Film Grade 65.5 80.0

Pre-Draft Fantasy Prospect Grade* (out of 50): 37.5

* - How well does his skill set carry over to the fantasy game? For receivers, a player needs to be a realistic threat for 70 catches and 1,000 receiving yards at some point early in their career to be a candidate for a perfect grade. Positional scarcity at the pro level is also a part of the equation.


    • Blistering speed. Cornerbacks in single coverage need to pray for safety help if the quarterback can throw an accurate deep ball.

    • Displays explosiveness and quick acceleration when he changes direction.

    • Used a lot as a vertical and screen receiver in 2023 but showed the ability to adjust the pacing of his routes and make sharp cuts in the short and intermediate areas more often in 2022.

    • A hands-catcher who is very confident in hauling in passes thrown outside of his frame; a 6.3 percent drop rate in 2023 is reasonable. (Three of his five drops came in one game and most of the five were focus drops rather than a technique issue.)

    • More willing to mix it up physically than one would expect for a 165-pound receiver with the ball in his hands; competitiveness is not an issue as a ball-carrier.

    • Led the FBS in punt return yardage in 2023 (371 yards), averaging 16.9 yards per punt return on 22 returns.


    • Hauled in an unthinkably low 25.5 percent (24 of 94) of his career deep targets (20-plus yards). Consistently tries hard to win at the catch point but fails more often than not.

    • Missed out on several more big-play opportunities due to lapses of knowing where he was on the field.

    • Does not create near the separation early that a receiver with his speed should on curls/hitches. When he did separate, it was typically late downfield.

    • Plays with an edge with the ball in his hands, but his size/strength limitations show up just about everywhere. For example, he can be disrupted with relative ease by a physical corner and does not use his hands on his release very often to counteract press.

    • Compounds size/strength limitations by giving minimal effort as a blocker; generally is not very effective as a blocker when he does engage.

    • Shows questionable effort when he does not expect to see the ball.

Bottom Line

The NFL has become friendlier to smaller receivers in recent years, but wideouts like Worthy still face an uphill battle to be anything more than complementary players. (If we just take receivers invited to the NFL Combine since 1987, only Marquise Brown, DeSean Jackson and Terance Mathis have experienced sustained success in the NFL while weighing less than 170 pounds. Tank Dell may be on the verge of adding his name to the list, however.) Such a fate may await Worthy as well despite the fact he enters the NFL as one of the fastest players in league history. Just because his upside is almost certainly as a complementary player does not mean he will not be an important piece to an offense, however. The kind of speed Worthy offers is something defenses have to account for on every play because it affects coverage, which, in turn, creates lighter boxes in the running game and reduces the number of times a team's alpha receiver has to deal with extra attention.

In some ways, Worthy is a walking contradiction. He is a small and super-fast receiver who did not do nearly as much damage downfield as one might expect from someone with his speed. (He never finished higher than 54th in FBS in deep yards in any of his three college seasons.) While he did not receive the highest level of quarterback play while at Texas, the Fresno native also hurt himself multiple times on deep throws by showing a lack of field awareness near the sideline. On the other hand, Worthy twice finished among the top 20 FBS receivers in yards after the catch. He shows a surprising amount of willingness to put his body on the line with the ball in his hands. Conversely, his effort can be called into question when he needs to block or when he knows the ball is unlikely to be headed in his direction.

The problem with most "speed receivers" is that speed is sometimes the only trick in their bag. As his yard-after-catch numbers attest, he is not just a "speed receiver." Perhaps his biggest problem is that he will not be a great fit for the handful or so of teams that want to pride themselves on having a physical rushing attack. He should be a great fit for an offense willing to spread things out or needing a speed merchant to open things up underneath for a dynamic alpha receiver who operates in the short and intermediate areas of the field. That is not a job description that screams alpha receiver or even future No. 1 receiver, so the team that invests in Worthy should do so with the expectation that his yearly production and consistency will not reflect the overall impact he will have on the offense.

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Doug Orth has written for FFToday since 2006 and been featured in USA TODAY's Fantasy Football Preview magazine since 2010. He is also a high-stakes player who often appears as a guest analyst on a number of national sports radio shows, such as Sirius XM’s “Fantasy Drive." Doug is also a member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association.

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