Despite being selected in the second round of the 2012 NFL Draft, Jerel Worthy did not emerge as a starter. Instead, he shifted into a rotational role essentially from the start.
While the Buffalo Bills gave him a chance to function in that capacity for parts of the past three seasons, the sixth-year defensive lineman will have to find another team after the Bills made the decision to cut him on Tuesday. The news was first reported by ESPN’s Field Yates.
Worthy, who played in 13 games for the Bills last season and five this year, will have to pass through waivers despite being a vested veteran. After the trade deadline, vested vets and players who otherwise don’t have enough service time to qualify as such are treated equally regarding transactions. So, another team will have a chance to claim the 27-year-old Worthy.
The Bills have used Worthy as part of their second unit, playing the Michigan State product on 115 snaps. Worthy’s made five tackles this season after finishing with 12 in 2016. Worthy’s snap count does not qualify for full-time status on Pro Football Focus, but the advanced metrics site issued a failing grade for Worthy’s 2017 work.
This also represents more turnover along Buffalo’s defensive front.
The now-Sean McDermott- and Brandon Beane-led operation made a higher-profile decision to trade Marcell Dareus, and the Bills have struggled against the run since. Worthy’s cut likely won’t have that kind of effect, but this shows more turnover for a team that’s jettisoned key players from the past regime. Worthy now joins Dareus, Sammy Watkins, Ronald Darby and Reggie Ragland as players shipped out under McDermott and Brandon Beane’s watch.