Daryl Worley’s decision paid off.
While many WVU football fans, rightfully so, thought Worley should stay for his senior season, the player felt otherwise. He tested the waters and came out swimming ahead.
With the 77th overall pick, Worley was picked up by the Carolina Panthers. The Panthers, in fact, traded up to select Worley midway through the third round.
Worley became the second former Mountaineer selected after Karl Joseph was picked 14th overall on Thursday night by the Oakland Raiders.
Worley certainly made an impact in his three-year career at West Virginia. The native of Philadelphia earned playing time right away as a freshman, but his best statistical season was his junior campaign.
He finished with six interceptions, 49 tackles, seven tackles for a loss and two forced fumbles. For his career, Worley finished with 126 tackles in 34 games. He had 10 interceptions and five pass breakups.
Worley is disciplined with his coverages and has solid all-around skills in the secondary. He is aggressive, but not overly assertive. Worley’s pro day performance helped lift him to a higher selection. He proved he can run faster and jump higher than he had in the past.
Showing that little improvement was appealing to Carolina scouts, who apparently were high on Worley from the moment he announced he was declaring for the draft.
Worley is also physically demanding. He stands at 6-foot-2 and weighs a healthy 198 pounds. His hands are large and his wingspan is expansive, according to one of his scouting reports.
Behind quarterback Cam Newton, the Panthers are the defending NFC Champions. They fell to the Bronocs in Super Bowl 50. With Worley on board, Carolina certainly has a shot to win it all as early as 2017.
According to WV Illustrated, Worley has a good chance to play right away.
"“The Panthers lost their top cornerback, Josh Norman, to the Washington Redskins this offseason after the two sides failed to come to a contract agreement,” writes the site. “The fact that Carolina picked Worley, and traded up to do so, suggests he could have a real chance to compete for playing time in the team’s secondary.”"
In the second round, the Panthers picked James Bradberry, a cornerback out of Samford. Bradberry was the 62 overall pick after a four-year career at the Southern Conference program.
The rookies will be competing for playing time right away. One of the two could be starting for the team at some point in the season. That could have been the plan all along by the Panthers brass. By bringing together two similar, young and talented cornerbacks, the open competition will bring out the best in them.