What makes Jason Worilds' decision to skip his senior season and enter the NFL Draft early more perplexing is his telling the Newport News Daily Press' Norm Wood that he expects hopes to be selected in the first day of the draft. I'm not sure if Worilds knows this, but starting this year the first day of the draft only includes the first round.
While I think Worilds is an outstanding college defensive end, there's no way he's going to be selected in the first round. The NFL Draft is a process where athletes are poked and prodded with every detail of their medical and personal history put under a microscope. Worilds had shoulder surgery after the 2008 season and while it may have been minor to him and to those who follow the Hokies, it won't be minor to the NFL scouts.
What also hurts Worilds is this is a very deep year for defensive tackles ends at the NFL Draft. Worilds may wind up as a linebacker at the next level according to Annette at ESPN.com, but among defensive ends he's ranked No. 12 by NFL Draft Scout and isn't ranked at all by SB Nation blog Mocking the Draft. However, MockingDan from MTD did heap praise on Worilds earlier this year:
Against Virginia Tech, the athleticism of Maryland left tackle Bruce Campbell will be tested. he could line up against Jason Worilds, who is as quick off the snap as any defensive end you'll find.
I think the best-case scenario for Worilds is the third round of this year's draft. Anyone who is saying he will go in the first round or "first day" is misleading him. However, I don't know Worilds' financial situation so this could be the most sound move for he and his family. If that's the case, I wish him the best of luck and hope he earns the millions he deserves from the NFL as long as there isn't a work stoppage in 2011.
According to Annette, Worilds has not hired an agent yet so he still has until Jan. 15 to pull his name from the draft. Macho Harris did something similar in 2008 when he declared himself eligible for the draft, but decided to return to Virginia Tech before the deadline. I hope Worilds will do the same, but if this is what's best for his family I'll understand his decision to turn pro.