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2024 NFL Draft Combine Winners: Xavier Worthy, Ricky Pearsall, Jaylen Wright

2024 NFL Draft Combine Winners: Xavier Worthy, Ricky Pearsall, Jaylen Wright

Do you still have your high school yearbook? I flipped through my 2005 time capsule the other day, surprised to find it wasn’t all in black and white. I don’t remember picture day, thankfully. Frosted tips combed straight forward with too much hair gel? Really, dude? I was co-captain of the golf team and traveled with the football team to cover them for the Observer and act as a statistician of sorts. Square as a checkerboard, I put the “-lative” in superlative.

The quote under that cheesy photo was an incoherent toast to my lucky number (12), my favorite food (tacos), and a profession of love to a girl I had no future with. So cringe. It’s a wonder how I’m as well-adjusted as I am today.

I love watching the NFL Scouting Combine. It’s a debutant soiree for world-class athletes. Some of the guys choose not to participate in the pageantry, which I see as leaving a little more to the imagination. “The Underwear Olympics” are like trashy reality shows for us football fans. This column is the reunion show where we roll the footage and hand out some truly unique awards to be featured prominently on the mantle.

2024 Dynasty Fantasy Football Guide

2024 NFL Combine Awards (2024 Fantasy Football)

Least Likely to Be Caught From Behind: Xavier Worthy (WR – Texas)

Move aside and step down to the silver platform, Mr. Ross. There’s a new fastest man for the folklore and his name is Xavier Worthy. The WR groups were organized alphabetically, which culminated beautifully for the primetime NFL Network broadcast. Worthy would be the anchor leg. First attempt: 4.25 seconds. Take those shoes off. He kept them laced, vowing to grab his piece of history at Lucas Oil Stadium.

Worthy, a Michigan transfer from Fresno, Calif., lit the turf pellets ablaze and Forrest Gump’d it around the field while stunned shrieks rained down from his 4.21-second jaunt. Unlike many previous speedsters, Worthy is considered a really exciting prospect. The BMI crowd will bemoan his wisp of a frame, but what do they know? Worthy is going to make an NFL team and fanbase giddy with excitement when his name is called in a few weeks.

Rick James ‘Super Freak’ Award: Ricky Pearsall (WR – Florida)

Gators wideout Ricky Pearsall already has a reputation for having a unique flair for the dramatic. His circus catch during the 2023 season is one of the best anyone has ever seen. His route-running prowess is a given, but not many were in the loop as to how ridiculously athletic Pearsall is. Relative to this historic WR class, his 4.41 time in the 40 wasn’t even in the top-10. Where the 40 is fun, it has nearly no correlation at all to success in the NFL. Pearsall’s 42-inch vertical and 4.05-second shuttle were among the best out of all Combine participants. Add in a 6.64-second 3-Cone drill and 10’9″ broad jump and there’s little doubt that Pearsall’s draft stock is on the rise.

MC Hammer ‘Can’t Touch This!’ Award: Jaylen Wright (RB – Tennessee)

I must mention the performance put forth by Isaac Guerendo from Louisville (by way of Wisconsin). He was outstanding and certainly warrants another gander at the game tape. Jaylen Wright is just a better player and, in some respects, more athletic. Wright blazed in the 40 with a time of 4.38, second-best to Guerendo. His 11’2″ broad jump was the best among RBs and his 38″ vertical was fourth-best. He reminds me of Raheem Mostert with his one-cut explosiveness and anticipatory vision in zone running schemes. Wright is a solid Day Two RB prospect who should be considered a nice upside pick in dynasty rookie drafts.


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