Selecting talented players in the NFL Draft is always important. However, we often see talented players flail as NFL players, at least temporarily, if they end up going into the wrong situation. While it’s most noticeable with quarterbacks, it can happen at any position… Looking at you, Arthur Smith.
So, what are the best team fits for the impressive Texas trio of offensive playmakers? Where should Xavier Worthy, Adonai Mitchell, and Ja’Tavion Sanders end up? Because they are all such talented prospects and we are so early in the process, it’s not easy to nail down where their value might lie. But it’s worth a shot.
Best NFL Team Fits Texas Longhorns Draft Prospects
Sanders is the quintessential modern tight end. Unfortunately, few spots at the NFL level can legitimately maximize that type of player. It’s particularly difficult to produce enough to warrant a top-50 selection. But there is one roster and offensive coordinator that could pull the trigger, especially if he tests as a freak athlete.
Worthy is a bit frustrating at times because of his inconsistent hands, but his long speed, explosiveness, fluidity, and post-catch creativity make him an incredibly dangerous player, particularly at the NFL level, where defenders are unable to be as physical along the route stem.
Mitchell hasn’t seen the same gravitational pull with the football as Worthy or Sanders, but those two have been in this offense with Quinn Ewers for multiple years, whereas Mitchell is a transfer from Georgia. At 6’4″, 200 pounds, the Longhorns wide receiver is a blur on the field with outstanding fluidity to become a three-level threat in the NFL. But he’s immediately a downfield and red-zone threat.
Xavier Worthy: Pittsburgh Steelers
A wide receiver that can get open at all three levels of the field, has a POTENT on-field attitude, and has a somewhat serious flaw in his game, depending on who you ask. Sounds like the perfect Diontae Johnson replacement if there ever was one.
There’s no way that Worthy would be as frustrating as Johnson, who is clearly talented but suffers from some of the most mind-numbing mistakes a player can make.
Worthy is realistically a good fit for most teams because of his skill set. He consistently finds ways to get open because of his explosiveness, fluidity, and technical prowess. But he’s also a post-catch wizard who plays about 30 pounds bigger than he his — not unlike DeVonta Smith in Philadelphia.
He would maintain a lot of gravity in the Steelers offense while George Pickens remains the alpha on the outside. Worthy can be a ball-hog for an offense while also possessing the speed and tracking ability to take the top off of opposing defenses.
Ja’Tavion Sanders: Indianapolis Colts
Although it wasn’t planned, the old adage is that great minds think alike. Ian Cummings mocked Sanders to the Colts in his recent seven-round NFL Mock Draft. Now, my colleague isn’t nearly as high on Sanders as yours truly.
Sanders is the perfect modern tight end. And if he tests like an elite athlete, which is what he resembles on the field, it fits the mold of a Colts draft pick perfectly. Yes, they also have Jelani Woods on the roster, and Woods was relatively successful in the previous offense.
But the pairing of Sanders coming from Steve Sarkisian’s offense to a Shane Steichen offense is perfect. Steichen has worked with Dallas Goedert in the past, using him in the screen game and allowing his post-catch ability to shine while also adding a layer to the offense.
Woods has not played in 2023. He suffered a hamstring injury during training camp and then had a setback during his rehab, so the new coaching staff has not seen him. And it’s not the worst idea to pair tight ends with different skill sets. Woods is a nasty vertical threat, while Sanders has that athletic ability but can be more versatile.
Adonai Mitchell: Kansas City Chiefs
The Chiefs need a wide receiver more than Théo Pourchaire needs a seat in Formula 1. It’s been evident all season that Kansas City’s lack of complementary help to Travis Kelce is a problem. Their pass catchers are inconsistent at best.
Mitchell has the size, speed, and tracking ability to unlock the part of Patrick Mahomes’s game that was so evident when Tyreek Hill was in Kansas City.
But Mitchell has the talent to plant his flag immediately as the Chiefs’ No. 1. Is that saying much? No. The point is, he’d be an immediate upgrade in that offense.
He’s a fluid athlete with impressive flexibility and footwork. Mitchell consistently separates against man coverage because of that fluidity, and he’s a potent weapon in the low red zone.
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