One of the latest in a long line of players that have taken the Glenville to Columbus pipeline, linebacker Chris Worley looks to join players like Donte Whitner, Ted Ginn Jr., and Marshon Lattimore as NFL successes from the Cleveland high school.
In addition to the Glenville pipeline, Worley also joins a long list of successful Buckeye linebackers to make a run at a career in the NFL. Along with position-mate Jerome Baker, Worley will look to continue a streak that includes only two seasons in the past decade that Ohio State didn’t have a linebacker drafted in one of seven rounds.
The linebacker finished his collegiate career with 154 total tackles (99 solo), 11 tackles for loss, two sacks, three forced fumbles and an interception. Worley was named a team captain for his senior season, and saw playing time in 50 games for the Buckeyes, starting 24 times.
“He’s just a really, really smart football player; he’s a guy who understands the game at a very high level,” defensive coordinator Greg Schiano said, according to Ohio State.
He lined up at all three linebacker positions in 2017, and despite missing three games due to a foot injury, still managed to finish fifth on the team in tackles with 56. The linebacker is good for more than just bringing down receivers and running backs, in 2017 he managed four quarterback hurries, behind only DE Nick Bosa.
STRENGTHS: Team leader with outstanding football character. Has overcome personal adversity on and off the field. Former safety with a feel for play development. Aggressive striker. Takes great care to dole out as much punishment as he can as hitter. Surprisingly agile as open field tackler. Able to bend and explode laterally into late cutback attempts. Rarely allows broken tackles when he’s able to square up runners. Steps quickly into run lanes to constrict exit angles. Plays his keys. Has core special teams potential.
WEAKNESSES: Movement is rigid and segmented. Plays straight legged. Lacks fluidity in open field and is sluggish with change of direction. Below average taking on blocks and squeezing the edge against tight ends. Needs to continue to add play strength. Pursuit acceleration is lacking. Doesn’t have the speed to overcome flow diagnosis. Gets caught up behind climbing guards. Lacks athletic traits to handle man coverage and will have to leave the field on passing downs. Production has been unimpressive.
- Height: 6-1 3/8”
- Weight: 238 lbs
- Hand size: 9 2/8”
- Arm length: 31 2/8”
- Wingspan: 75 6/8”
Bench press: 15 reps
40-yard dash: 4.86 sec
Chris Worley 40-yard dash: 4.86 pic.twitter.com/qSxcmf04TC— Cameron DaSilva (@camdasilva) March 4, 2018
Vertical jump: 29.5”
3-cone drill: DNR
Interview Notables and Quotables
Heading into the Combine, Worley was largely considered a late-round draft pick, or potential undrafted free agent. He didn’t do quite enough to show scouts he deserves a higher pick through his workouts in Indy, and skipped quite a few of the drills and workouts. He did garner some interest from teams at the East-West Shrine Game — and impressed some analysts —, and should definitely land a roster spot heading into rookie camp.