2010 NFL Draft Preview

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The NFL Draft begins on Thursday night, and ends on Saturday. Several Hokies
have a chance to hear their names called, though none are expected to go on
Thursday night in the first round. A couple could go as early as Friday, when
rounds two and three are broadcast. The draft will conclude on Saturday with
rounds four through seven.

Today we’ll focus on five Tech players who have a legitimate shot of being
drafted. At the end, we’ll touch on several more who could sign free agent
contracts.

Jason Worilds
Position: OLB/DE
Ht: 6-1 1/4
Wt.: 254
Projection: Rounds 2-4

Worilds elected to enter the NFL Draft following his junior season.
Considering he could be selected as early as the late second round, that seems
to be a good decision. Worilds was a defensive end for the Hokies, but he could
make the switch to outside linebacker in the NFL. What position he plays will
depend on what team drafts him.

14 teams are expected to run the 3-4 defense this season, or some variation
of it. That means that more pass rushing outside linebackers are needed. Worilds
is a better fit for outside linebacker in the NFL. He’s a bit undersized as a
defensive end, and had a tendency to get engulfed by some of college football’s
bigger offensive tackles, though he frequently abuses tight ends. That tendency
would only grow in the NFL.

Playing outside linebacker would allow Worilds to use his athleticism to rush
the quarterback and play in space. He has solid speed, but he has terrific
change of direction ability and good acceleration.

Two things hold Worilds back from being a higher draft pick. First, he hasn’t
played outside linebacker before. Second, he has a bad history of shoulder
injuries. He went through two shoulder surgeries in college. His shoulder
problems date back to his true freshman season, and he spent the entire 2008
season playing with just one healthy arm. His durability is a true concern to
NFL teams, though they’ll be impressed by his toughness and his ability to play
through his shoulder injury in 2008.

Because he’s never played linebacker before, pass coverage could be a concern...