Blog Entry

Michigan State loses DT Worthy to NFL

Posted on: January 5, 2012 3:40 pm
Edited on: January 6, 2012 3:34 pm
Michigan State junior defensive tackle Jerel Worthy is forgoing his senior season and heading to the NFL.

Worthy, rated by as the No. 4 defensive tackle and No. 19 prospect overall, is viewed as a run-stuffing presence with enough quickness to collapse the pocket as a pass rusher. The talented defensive tackle is featured in both Rob Rang and Dane Brugler's current first round projections. Worthy ranks behind just Penn State's Devon Still, North Carolina's Quinton Coples and Mississippi State's Fletcher Cox. Unlike Coples and Cox, who played a great deal of defensive end throughout their collegiate careers, Worthy is a pure defensive tackle -- though his bulk and long arms make him an intriguing candidate to play the edge in a 3-4 alignment.

Despite the lofty ranking Worthy's decision didn't come easy to him. According to Detroit Free Press sportswriter George Sipple, Worthy acknowledged the impact his family's health and well-being had in his decision to leave East Lansing early.

In a prepared statement Worthy said, “After a lot of deliberation with my family, a lot of sleepless nights, I decided, for the benefit of myself as well as my family and my future, I would forgo my senior year.”

He later referred to his father, who suffered a stroke before the start of the 2010 season.

“I set out to help win the 2010 Big Ten championship in his name, and I feel strongly that I have a responsibility to provide financial support for my family.”

Though he only registered 30 tackles (including 10.5 tackles for loss, three sacks) in 2011, Worthy was a key contributor to Michigan State's stellar defense. His unit, which led the Big Ten in total defense and run defense, gave him the notoriety to earn AP first team All-American honors -- the first Spartan to be honored by the Associated Press since the legendary Bubba Smith was recognized in 1966.

Worthy leaves Michigan State having accumulated 107 tackles, 27.5 tackles for loss and 12 sacks in 40 career games.


Since: Jan 18, 2009
Posted on: January 6, 2012 2:55 am

Michigan State loses DT Worthy to NFL

Good luck, Jerel. The Spartan Nation will miss you in our stadium, but we look forward to your continued success in the future!

Since: Mar 7, 2008
Posted on: January 5, 2012 8:23 pm

Michigan State loses DT Worthy to NFL

Dammit.  You were a Stud for the Spartans.  Good luck in the NFL, here's to a career for you as successful as Bubba's.

Since: Mar 7, 2008
Posted on: January 5, 2012 8:22 pm

Michigan State loses DT Worthy to NFL

Dammit.  All the best Jerel, you were a Spartan stud for sure.  I hope you have as successful a career as Bubba did.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or