Chiefs wide receiver projected to make NFL's All-Rookie team

Making the all-rookie team is about far more than just talent. It's also about perceived fit and potential early playing time.
NFL Combine
NFL Combine / Stacy Revere/GettyImages

Making the all-rookie team is about far more than just talent. It's also about perceived fit and potential early playing time.

The Kansas CIty Chiefs aren't exactly flush with the league's most productive rookies year in and year out. That's what happens when you end up selecting after everyone else year after year and doing so with an already loaded roster. Suffice it to say, there's not a lot of impact potential yet untapped or impactful reps to be claimed.

This season, however, the Chiefs might have struck it rich with their first-round selection, which is why media outlets are predicting big things for him.

Chad Reuter, a scribe at the NFL's official site, released his preseason All-Rookie Team projections, and despite having only two spots for wide receiver in a loaded draft class, the Chiefs snuck in with their pick at No. 28 overall with University of Texas wideout Xavier Worthy.

While the likes of Rome Odunze and Malik Nabers were taken in the top 10, it's Marvin Harrison Jr., who was taken at No. 4 overall by the Arizona Cardinals, and Worthy, for whom the Chiefs traded up a few spots to No. 28 to grab.

What makes Worthy such a projectable pass catcher so early in his career is a mixture of three elements. First, he brings newfound potential as a deep threat into an offense lacking any vertical dimension after trading Tyreek Hill. Second, the looming suspension of Rashee Rice will leave the Chiefs short-handed in the interim, creating playing time for Worthy that might not otherwise be there. Third, wide receiver position was already quite thin overall, which meant that even with Rice available, there were still opps in front of Worthy in his rookie campaign.

When he was with the Longhorns, Worthy proved himself capable of handling the boundary as a slighter receiver who could break any play open with his game-breaking speed—the same top speed on display in his 4.21 second time in the 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine back in February.

For Andy Reid, Worthy reminded the Chiefs head coach of former Eagles star DeSean Jackson, a player who would go on to become on the NFL's most reliable and dynamic wide receivers who ended up with 912 receiving yards his first year in the league.

If somehow the wideout part goes a bit south of projections, Reuter also notes that Worthy could make the All-Rookie NFL Team as a returner, too.