2017 NFL Draft

Jerel Worthy, DT

School: Michigan State  |  Conference: BIG10
College Experience: Junior  |  Hometown: Huber Heights, OH
Height/Weight: 6-2 / 308 lbs.
Projected Ranking
OverallPositionProj. Rnd.
Latest News
04/29/2012 - QUOTE TO NOTE: "A great organization took a chance on me. They saw my potential. I'm just ready to go in and just prove everybody wrong and just make an impact." - Defensive end Jerel Worthy, a potential first-round prospect whom the Packers picked in the second round of the draft. - The Sports Xchange

04/29/2012 - A closer look at the Packers' picks: Round 2/51 -- Jerel Worthy, DE, 6-2, 308, Michigan State...The first-round prospect's slide down the board enabled the Packers to jump up to get him. Kicking the powerful defensive tackle outside fills a void alongside B.J. Raji. - The Sports Xchange

04/29/2012 - Ted Thompson was in an almost apologetic mood toward the end of a draft like no other in his decorated tenure as Green Bay's general manager. The Packers went into this year's draft with 12 picks, which is par for the course on Thompson's watch. Green Bay averaged 10 picks each year since his first draft on the job in 2005. Thompson, though, limited the bounty this time around. He traded up three times - equaling his total number of trade-ups the previous seven years - and made do with eight picks. "It's horrible," Thompson said jokingly about giving away draft choices. "I told 'em (his staff) I was ashamed. I'm not my father's son anymore. My father is very frugal. It's pathetic. "But, in this case, I felt like it was appropriate. I feel like we have a good, solid team. I felt like where we knew we felt like we were getting quality we should try to do it." With an unquestioned emphasis on defense, the Packers' Achilles' heel last season, Thompson took USC defensive end-turned-linebacker Nick Perry in the first round (No. 28) on Thursday night and then got bold. Thompson traded up twice in short order on Day 2 of the draft Friday night to wind up with more help for the league's worst-ranked defense with a pair of second-round picks: Michigan State defensive lineman Jerel Worthy (No. 51) and Vanderbilt cornerback Casey Hayward (No. 62). The Packers moved up eight spots to take Worthy, whom some considered first-round material, by making a trade with the Philadelphia Eagles. Green Bay relinquished its original second-round pick (No. 59) and also a fourth-round pick (No. 123). - The Sports Xchange

04/29/2012 - In the process of loading up on defensive players, the Packers' brass intends to put many of them in new positions as soon as the rookie orientation camp, which will be May 11-13. Top draft pick Perry is earmarked to be the starting right outside linebacker, opposite All-Pro and former college teammate Clay Matthews. "I'm a go-getter, explosive, ready to get off the ball, stop the run and create havoc in the pass-rushing situations," said Perry, who led the Pac-12 last season with 9.5 sacks. Worthy, a stout defensive tackle for Michigan State, is going to defensive end as the Packers try to give support to tackle B.J. Raji after losing Cullen Jenkins last year in free agency and getting next to nothing out of young replacement Mike Neal. Green Bay will be without the injury-riddled Neal for the first four games of next season because of a suspension for violating the league's policy on performance-enhancing drugs. "He's a kid that's got very good movement skills for a big guy," defensive line coach Mike Trgovac said of the 6-2, 308-pound Worthy. "So, he's not going to be restricted to just playing a certain amount of downs. He'll have the opportunity to compete here for all three downs. That'll be up to him whether he can do it. He'll get the opportunity to compete for that." The Packers also plan to move Manning, their fifth-round choice, to inside linebacker in their 3-4 scheme after he played outside on the weak side in North Carolina State's 4-3 front. - The Sports Xchange

04/27/2012 - DT Jerel Worthy, Michigan State -- A disruptive, powerful, high-intensity penetrator, Worthy can shoot gaps and hold up against double-team blocks. The Packers upgraded at outside linebacker Thursday, drafting Nick Perry (Southern Cal) 28th overall, but also considered Worthy at that spot.

04/26/2012 - ROB RANG'S TOP 50 PLAYERS OF THE 2012 NFL DRAFT: 26. Jerel Worthy, DT, Michigan State*: Worthy measured in a bit smaller (6-2, 308) than expected at the Combine and wasn't particularly impressive there in drills. He was much better at his Pro Day, however, and was the primary reason why the Spartans led the Big Ten in both run and total defense. I have some reservations about his snap to snap consistency but Worthy is a tough run-stuffing presence on the inside with uncommon burst to penetrate gaps and make plays behind the line of scrimmage. - Rob Rang, NFLDraftScout.com

04/05/2012 - 04/05/12 NFL DRAFT SCOUT FALLER: Jerel Worthy, DT, Michigan State: This year's defensive tackle class is loaded with depth at all levels of the draft, however, the picture is unclear at the top. Some consider Michael Brockers the top player at his position, while others prefer Fletcher Cox or Dontari Poe. A name who is also being mentioned among the best defensive tackles, Worthy does face strong concerns about his hand use and functional strength to anchor at the point of attack and consistently get off blocks and double teams. He has superb snap anticipation off the snap to win the gap and penetrate the pocket, but if he isn't able to get a quick first step off the ball then too many times he is a non-factor on the play. With this in mind, it will be tough for a team to pull the trigger on the defensive tackle in the first round. - Dane Brugler, NFLDraftScout.com

03/15/2012 - It surprised few when Jerel Worthy decided to forgo his senior season and declare for the 2012 NFL Draft. Sitting next to MSU head coach Mark Dantonio at the Clara Bell Smith Student-Athlete Academic Center in January, the first team All-American junior defensive tackle came to the decision to leave following MSU's 33-30 triple overtime victory against Georgia in the 2012 Outback Bowl. With the April draft quickly approaching, Worthy was one of 24 former Spartan football players eligible for the draft who worked out for scouts and coaches at Wednesday's MSU Pro Day at Duffy Daugherty Indoor Football Building. Following his showcase Wednesday, Worthy - who participated in the bench press and a few other drills - said he was more comfortable than he was during the NFL Combine in February, and it showed up in the way he was able to perform. "Just wanted to show I was explosive and don't waste movements," Worthy said. "That's what the NFL is all about, is not wasting movements and getting to where you got to go as fast as possible. ... Just a successful day, and I was happy with it." During his time at MSU, Worthy played in 40 career games and recorded 107 tackles, including 27.5 tackles for loss and 12 sacks. Worthy's performance on the field earned him first-team All-America honors from several major media outlets and was an All-Big Ten first-team selection (coaches and media). In his final season with MSU, Worthy played in all 14 games. He finished with a total of 30 tackles - 19 solo and 11 assisted - and had 10.5 tackles for a loss of 42 total yards. He also dished out 3.5 sacks for a total of 28 yards. - Dillon Davis, MSU State News

03/13/2012 - NFL DRAFT SCOUT TOP DOWN DEFENSIVE LINEMEN: *Jerel Worthy, DT, Michigan State, 6-2, 308, 1-2...He didn't do himself any favors with a mediocre performance at a combine filled with talented defensive tackles. But in games, where it counts, Worthy is the definition of the word "load." He demands immediate and constant attention by blockers or he can ruin an offense, and pretty much did exactly that as he earned All-American honors last season. Worthy anchored a Spartans defense that led the Big Ten in rushing defense (100 ?? yards per game), total defense (277.4 ypg) and sacks (45). Worthy explodes off the line at the snap and quickly uses his strong hands and unusual overall power to maintain an advantage. Little wonder he had at least one tackle for a loss in nine of 14 games last season. He said his decision to enter the draft as an underclassman was partly because his father suffered a stroke in 2010 and he wants to offer financial support for the family. - Frank Cooney, The Sports Xchange

02/23/2012 - NFL DRAFT SCOUT PRE-COMBINE TOP 64: 24. *Jerel Worthy, DT, Michigan State, 6-3, 310, 1-2...Worthy is the definition of the word load. He demands immediate and constant attention by blockers or he can ruin an offense, and pretty much did exactly that as he earned All-American honors last season. Worthy anchored a Spartans defense that led the Big Ten in rushing defense (100.5 yards per game), total defense (277.4 ypg) and sacks (45). Worthy explodes off the line at the snap and quickly uses his strong hands and unusual overall power to maintain an advantage. Little wonder he had at least one tackle for a loss in nine of 14 games last season. He said his decision to enter the draft as an underclassman was partly because his father suffered a stroke in 2010 and he wants to offer financial support for the family. - Frank Cooney - The Sports Xchange, NFL Draft Scout

01/06/2012 - Michigan State consensus All-American Jerel Worthy, who anchored a Spartan defensive unit that led the Big Ten in rushing defense (100.5 yards per game), total defense (277.4 ypg.) and sacks (45), announced Thursday, Jan. 5 that he will forgo his senior season and enter the 2012 National Football League Draft. The 6-foot-3, 310-pound junior defensive tackle produced a tackle for loss in nine of MSU's 14 games. The deadline for underclassmen to declare themselves eligible for the 2012 NFL Draft is Sunday, Jan. 15. "I feel like the timing is right for me to pursue my dream of playing in the National Football League," Worthy said. "As a team, we went out and accomplished most of our goals: winning a Big Ten Championship (2010), playing in the inaugural Big Ten Championship Game, beating Michigan multiple times and winning a New Year's Day bowl game. In addition, I was able to accomplish my personal goal of being named a consensus All-American. So those were all key factors in my decision to enter the NFL Draft. "I also had to take my family situation into account, as my dad suffered a stroke during the 2010 season. In fact, I set out to help win that 2010 Big Ten Championship in his name, and I feel strongly that I have a responsibility to provide financial support to my family. "The most difficult part about arriving at this decision is leaving my teammates and this football program. I was fortunate to play on a special defense this season." - Michigan State football

01/05/2012 - Michigan State defensive tackle Jerel Worthy has decided to skip his senior season and enter the NFL draft. The 310-pound junior, a first team Associated Press All-American this season, announced his decision Thursday. He said it was the right time to leave following the 33-30 triple-overtime win over Georgia in the Outback Bowl. "As far as spiritually, my decision kind of came after we blocked that field goal against Georgia," Worthy said. "I knew in my heart that this was the right way to go out, on top, as a winner." Worthy said he has not hired an agent yet and will continue to evaluate his options. Worthy started all 14 games this season and recorded 30 tackles, 10.5 for loss, as well as 3.5 sacks. Worthy also tallied five tackles, two for loss, during the bowl game victory. "When you have an opportunity like that, it's very difficult to pass up because of the financial situation you would be in at this point in time," coach Mark Dantonio said. "We wish (Worthy) the best at Michigan State and we will miss him tremendously." Worthy said the health of his father, Bobby Smith, also played a role in his decision. Smith suffered a stroke in the spring of 2010. "My father is slowly but surely progressing back to where he needs to be," Worthy said. - AP Sports

01/02/2012 - Scouting the Michigan State run defense: The Spartans lead the Big Ten and are 12th nationally in rush defense, allowing 104.3 yards a game and 2.9 a carry. That starts with DT Jerel Worthy, but DE Will Gholston also has been a powerful run stopper, while LBs Denicos Allen, Max Bullough and Chris Norman have all had excellent seasons answering the biggest question about a defense that said goodbye to two-time All-American Greg Jones. Every member of Michigan State's defense got some kind of All-Big Ten recognition. Wisconsin started strong Saturday but finished with just 126 yards rushing on the Spartans. - The Sports Xchange

12/29/2011 - Michigan State junior defensive tackle Jerel Worthy said he won't decide whether to return for his senior season or leave early for the NFL until after the Outback Bowl. Worthy was among the defensive and offensive linemen who spoke with reporters after practice today at Tampa Jesuit High. "I know I've got a big decision to make here in the next couple weeks or so," Worthy said. "Right now, I'm trying to focus on a bowl win for this team, for this program. It would be huge to get a quality bowl win against a quality team." The No. 12 Spartans (10-3) face the No. 18 Georgia Bulldogs (10-3) on Monday at Raymond James Stadium. Worthy said he hasn't made a decision yet and acknowledged it is weighing on him. "It's a hard choice," he said. "You come to work every day with such a group of guys. You're around a great coaching staff every day. Great support staff and great fan base. It's definitely a hard decision to make. I know, at the end of the day, I have to base it off myself, my personal reasons as well as my family. It's never always about the money. It's more about the opportunity that comes your way. "At the end of the day, whatever decision is made will be the best decision possible." Worthy said he wants to get NFL feedback before making a decision. He also said he'd have to talk it over with Spartans coach Mark Dantonio and other players who have been in a similar position before if the feedback indicates he likely would go in the second round. - George Sipple, The Detroit Free

12/07/2011 - 2011 AFCA FBS COACHES' ALL-AMERICA TEAM: DL Jerel Worthy, Jr., Michigan State, has been selected to the 2011 AFCA FBS Coaches' All-America Team announced by the American Football Coaches Association. Consensus first-team All-Big Ten selection (coaches and media) . . . is MSU's first All-Big Ten first-team selection at defensive tackle since Travis Davis in 1989 . . . named one of 12 semifinalists for the Lombardi Award, one of 16 semifinalists for the Bednarik Award, and one of 20 quarterfinalists for the Lott IMPACT Trophy (Defensive IMPACT Player of the Year) . . . his presence on the defensive line is one of the main reasons MSU leads the Big Ten in total defense and rushing defense . . . consensus first-team Midseason All-American . . . fourth on the team with 8.5 tackles for loss (40 yards), including 3.5 sacks (28 yards). - Michigan State football

09/21/2011 - SCOUTING THE DEFENSE: Michigan State was off balance to start but ended up holding Notre Dame to just 275 yards and is tops in the Big Ten in most major defensive categories. The pass rush still isn't as fierce as hoped, though. QUOTE TO NOTE: "This team can shoot itself to the top if we remain steady and continue to work hard." - MSU junior DT Jerel Worthy - The Sports Xchange

09/21/2011 - Jerel Worthy was already adjusting his goals for the season after Saturday's 31-13 loss at Notre Dame. "Eleven and one," Worthy said. Worthy has been one of the top promoters of some lofty talk at Michigan State - the Spartans have been breaking huddles with "National champs!" in practice - but Saturday's defeat was a stark reminder that this team is far from the national elite at this point. Now the challenge is to refocus, learn from the loss and get ready to defend last season's Big Ten co-championship. The Spartans get one more tune-up when Central Michigan visits on Saturday, followed by a critical Big Ten opener at Ohio State. "Our guys will continue to push," Mark Dantonio said. "And that's the beautiful thing about being in a conference, I guess, is that our conference still remains intact. All of our goals remain intact." Well, not all of them. The national title talk looks far-fetched in light of the latest performance. - The Sports Xchange

09/21/2011 - When junior DT Jerel Worthy put on his jersey before the Notre Dame game, he noticed something strange. It had the number 95 on it instead of the usual 99. Worthy went to equipment manager Bob Knickerbocker and said there must have been an error, but Knickerbocker said the staff wanted Worthy to wear No. 95 to honor former MSU great Bubba Smith, who passed away over the summer. "I actually thought they made an error," Worthy said. "But they were just saying they wanted to (pay a) tribute to Bubba Smith today, and it was something I was honored to do. It was a great tribute to him today. I just tried to go out there and play like Bubba Smith would play, play with the same leadership, play with the same intensity. And I just tried to do my best." - The Sports Xchange

09/16/2011 - LOOKING GOOD: The Spartans were dominant up front in week 2, with Jerel Worthy, Anthony Rashad White and Kevin Pickelman disrupting on the interior and allowing everyone else to make plays. - The Sports Xchange

08/15/2011 - With Jerel Worthy, there always seems to be more to the story. He hints strongly at going pro early one day, backs off the next. He makes brash comments on Twitter and clarifies later. He appears to be an athletic rarity on the field, but his position coach says the mental side of the game is the key to his success. At 6-foot-3, 310 pounds and with the foot speed of a smaller player, Worthy stands out at a position of high importance to NFL teams. He was asked where he stands for a story in the Aug. 6 edition of his hometown Dayton (Ohio) Daily News. "If I take care of business, that fifth year is not going to be required (at MSU)," said Worthy, who redshirted as a freshman in 2008. "I'm just working hard and training as if this is my last year and as if I don't really have another opportunity to come back. I feel like I have to get it all done this year. If the opportunity presents itself to where I need to come back (to MSU), then I'll take the time out and talk to my family and we'll come up with a decision." During MSU's media day on Monday, Worthy answered the NFL question differently - though it was more of a deflection than a denial. "Personally, I just want to really focus on the season," he said. "To be honest, all the mock drafts are kind of irrelevant in my mind because of the simple fact that if our team doesn't do well, I don't look good. So it's all focused on the team. I want to be the best I can be, I want to be the best teammate I can be and hopefully get to that national championship." - Joe Rexrode, Lansing State Journal

07/13/2011 - 2011 ROTARY LOMBARDI AWARD PRESEASON WATCH LIST: Jerel Worthy, DT, Michigan St., (26 career games, 77 tackles, 17 TFLs, 8.5 sacks), has been selected to the Rotary Lombardi Award Preseason watch list for the 2011 college football season. Eligibility for the Rotary Lombardi Award is limited to down linemen, end-to-end, either on offense of defense, who set up no farther than 10 yards to the left or right of the ball, and linebackers who set up no father than five yards deep from the line of scrimmage. This is the 42nd year that the Rotary Lombardi Award has named the nation's college lineman of the year. - The Rotary Lombardi Award Committee

07/11/2011 - 2011 OUTLAND TROPHY PRESEASON WATCH LIST: Jerel Worthy, Michigan State, DT, has been selected one of 65 players named to Preseason Outland Trophy Watch List for the 2011 college football season. The Outland Trophy goes to the best interior lineman in college football, presented annually since 1946 and is the third oldest award in major college football. - Football Writers Association of America

07/11/2011 - 2011 BRONKO NAGURSKI TROPHY PRESEASON WATCH LIST: Jerel Worthy, Michigan State, DT, has been selected one of 87 players named to Preseason Bronko Nagurski Trophy Watch List for the 2011 college football season. The Bronko Nagurski Trophy is awarded annually to the nation's best defensive player by the Football Writers Association of America and the Charlotte Touchdown Club. - Football Writers Association of America

07/08/2011 - 2011 CHUCK BEDNARIK AWARD PRESEASON WATCH LIST: Jerel Worthy, Michigan State, DT, Sr., has been selected by the The Maxwell Football Club to the Chuck Bednarik Award Watch List for the 2011 college football season, given annually to the best defensive player. - The Maxwell Football Club

05/03/2011 - 2011 LOTT IMPACT TROPHY WATCH LIST: Jerel Worthy, Michigan State, DT, has been named to the 42-player Lott IMPACT Trophy watch list for the 2011 college football season as selected by the Pacific Club IMPACT Foundation. - Pacific Club IMPACT Foundation


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