Jaguars make surprise WR pick in the 1st-round of latest 2024 NFL Mock Draft

• The Jaguars make an unconventional pick in the 33rd Team's latest mock draft.

Mar 2, 2024; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Texas wide receiver Xavier Worthy (WO40) ran an official time of
Mar 2, 2024; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Texas wide receiver Xavier Worthy (WO40) ran an official time of / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Wide receiver remains a need for the Jacksonville Jaguars even after signing Gabe Davis in free agency. With the 17th overall pick in the 2024 draft, they'll be in a position to take one of the top receiver prospects. And while the Jags draft a wide receiver in The 33rd Team's latest mock, they go with an unusual choice.

Ian Valentino of The 33rd Team has the Jags taking Xavier Worthy at No. 17. He argues that the former Texas standout would be an ideal replacement for Calvin Ridley, citing his speed and ability to create yards after the catch as the main reasons.

"Losing Calvin Ridley hurts the Jacksonville Jaguars in the short term, but it was the right move to avoid paying him what Tennessee did. The Jaguars' trio of Christian Kirk, Zay Jones and Gabe Davis still lacks an explosive option, so Xavier Worthy's record-setting speed is especially attractive.

Worthy has the field vision and open-field burst to create easy yards after the catch. He has to improve his route running and reliability as a pass-catcher, but it's undeniable how much of a game-breaker he is."

Worthy turned heads at the Scouting Combine after completing the 40-yard dash in a record-setting 4.21 seconds. He went on to have an outstanding pro day, showing that there's more than speed to his game. A four-star recruit out of high school, the 2023 first-team All-Big 12 was a three-year starter for the Longhorns. Last year, he hauled in 75 receptions for 1,014 yards with five touchdowns.

But as athletic as Worthy is, he does come with a few issues, most of which derive from his light frame. At 165 pounds, he struggles against press coverage and has difficulties coming down with contested catches. On top of that, he's had too many drops despite the fact that he does a good job of tracking the football.

Should the Jaguars draft Texas WR Xavier Worthy in the 2024 NFL Draft?

In Jacksonville, Xavier Worthy would join a wide receiver corps that includes Gabe Davis, Christian Kirk, Zay Jones, and Devin Duvernay. There's no doubt the Jaguars could use Worthy's ability to stretch the field. That said, pick No. 17 is too high to take a flyer on him. At that point of the draft, there will be other better-rounded receivers available.

Throughout draft season, the Jags have been linked to Brian Thomas Jr., Keon Coleman, and even Worthy's teammate, Adonai Mitchell. They could also trade up to take Rome Odunze or Malik Nabers in the top 10. None of them are as fast as Worthy but all of them may be safer picks.

After all, receivers can work on reducing their number of drops but you cannot coach size, and the area in which Xorthy struggles. This doesn't mean Jacksonville should avoid him in the draft, but the first round may be too early. On the other hand, he would be a value pick in the second or even third round if they go cornerback or bolster the pass rush at No. 17.

Ideally, you want your first-rounder to have an immediate impact, and Worthy may need to go through an adjustment period before he can contribute in the NFL. He could most definitely become an important piece on the Jaguars' offense but they need a WR1, and it's uncertain if he has that kind of ceiling.

The bottom line is that the first round is too early to draft Xavier Worthy but he could be a solid pick for the Jaguars once they've addressed other needs.

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