Xavier Worthy is one of the best wide receivers in the country and certainly one of the most entertaining in the game. His slight build is paired with an incredibly physical attitude, not unlike Philadelphia Eagles WR DeVonta Smith. But a defender landed on his ankle along the sideline, and he left for the locker room.
What could a lingering lower-body injury mean for the College Football Playoffs? And will it hurt his potential NFL Draft stock?
Xavier Worthy Injury Update
Early in the fourth quarter, Worthy caught a pass and ran toward the sideline. He was tackled low, and the defender landed with all of his weight on the receiver’s lower body. Worthy was in clear pain on the ground, and the training staff quickly led him to the locker room.
— NFL Highs (@frito_paw) December 2, 2023
Worthy has been the Longhorns’ top target for three consecutive seasons now. He nearly tripled everyone else’s receiving yards as a true freshman (981). He led the team again in 2022, although it was a “down” season for the speedy receiver (760). His 883 yards once again led the team, but Adonai Mitchell scored nine touchdowns to Worthy’s five.
All three of the Texas playmakers had big days against Oklahoma State. Mitchell and tight end Ja’Tavion Sanders each had over 100 yards, and Worthy posted 86 yards on six catches.
Worthy was seen on the sideline on crutches with a boot on his foot. Head coach Steve Sarkisian said that the X-rays were negative.
Can the Offense Compete in the CFP Without Worthy?
Yes. Worthy is incredibly talented, but this Texas offense oozes with talent. Jordan Whittington has been an afterthought in 2023, but he caught 50 passes for 652 yards in 2022. He’s a talented player.
Mitchell and Sanders are both potential top-50 picks in the 2024 NFL Draft. They’re both endlessly explosive for their positions, and each can operate at all three levels of the field.
And we mustn’t forget whose offense this is. Sark is one of the best offensive architects in college football. He consistently provides easy answers for his quarterbacks while maximizing the talent at his disposal. If Worthy suffered a serious lower-body injury, “Sark” might have nearly a month to develop a game plan around his other weapons.
They’ll miss Worthy most as the manufactured touch guy on the outside. He takes the bulk of wide receiver screens because he’s so creative after the catch.
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