2024 NFL Draft: Rome Odunze, Malik Nabers jockey for position behind Marvin Harrison Jr. — updated WR rankings

Marvin Harrison Jr. hogs the spotlight at wide receiver. But make no mistake, Rome Odunze, Malik Nabers, and Keon Coleman are right on his heels. Let’s assess the group with an updated WR ranking for the 2024 NFL Draft.
Nov 18, 2023; Corvallis, Oregon, USA; Washington Huskies wide receiver Rome Odunze (1) celebrates a
Nov 18, 2023; Corvallis, Oregon, USA; Washington Huskies wide receiver Rome Odunze (1) celebrates a / Craig Strobeck-USA TODAY Sports
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2024 NFL Draft Tier 4 (WRs) — Two Texas Pass Catchers And Another LSU Star

WR8 — Xavier Worthy, WR, Texas

2023 Stats: 73 receptions, 969 receiving yards, 5 touchdowns, 25% contested catch rate (5/20)

2024 NFL Draft Grade: Top 40 (No. 37 Overall)

Almost every entry on this list flexes an elite athletic profile, with many looking like statues chiseled from stone. Xavier Worthy, the fireball wideout from Texas, is the one exception. Listed at a generous 6-foot-1 and 172 pounds, there’s a chance both of those numbers prove to be exaggerated when official measurements come in. But still, Worthy is an exciting prospect nonetheless.

The Longhorn star glides downfield, showcasing arguably the best deep ball tracking ability in the 2024 NFL Draft. He uses a quick first step to get off the blocks and then builds up speed as he works his routes. Although his meager size is an issue, it does allow Worthy to squeeze through tight holes and shake free in short-yardage crossers.

Drops have been a consistent problem in college, which is never a good sign for someone who relies on the deep shots as much as Worthy. However, the red flags don’t overshadow the difference-making skillset he brings to the table. It’s enough to knock the 20-year-old pass catcher out of Day 1 — but not by much.

WR9 — Brian Thomas Jr., WR, LSU

2023 Stats: 60 receptions, 1,079 receiving yards, 15 touchdowns, 58.3% contested catch rate (7/12)

2024 NFL Draft Grade: Top 50 (No. 44 Overall)

Going deeper than raw stats, the LSU star proved his proficiency as a “go-up-and-get-it” target for Heisman Trophy finalist Jayden Daniels. Brian Thomas Jr. uses his size, power, and long arms to effectively box out the defender before leaping in the air and snagging the ball at its apex. He really looks like Ja’Marr Chase in that regard, if you squint your eyes hard enough.

His reason for being a Round 2 prospect lies in the technical side of things. Thomas Jr. is a capable route runner, but he wasn’t asked to expand his route tree at LSU. Furthermore, the jump-ball specialist has a history of drops in college, including five of them in 2023. The best landing spot for Thomas Jr. would be a receiver-needy team in the top 50.