Eric DeCosta fans flames of Nate Wiggins-Xavier Worthy rivalry before Week 1 duel

DeCosta is all-in on Wiggins
NFL Combine - Portraits
NFL Combine - Portraits / Todd Rosenberg/GettyImages

The Baltimore Ravens didn't select a wide receiver until the fourth round of the 2024 NFL Draft. While both fans and draft analysts alike were thrilled with the selection of North Carolina's Devontez Walker, it's not unreasonable to wish Baltimore spent an earlier pick on a perimeter playmaker.

One player who was linked to Baltimore quite regularly was Texas wide receiver Xavier Worthy, who set a record with a 4.21 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine. The Ravens never even got the chance to ponder how Worthy could fit in on this team, as the Kansas City Chiefs traded up to select him.

The Chiefs and Ravens will face off against one another in Week 1, which could lead to Worthy and Wiggins playing against one another right off the bat. Ravens GM Eric DeCosta may have inadvertently fanned the flames of a budding rivalry between the two electric players.

DeCosta was quoted as saying that Wiggins would have still been the pick at No. 30 overall if Worthy was on the board. DeCosta was unmoved by Worthy as a player, as he believes his skillset is too similar to that of emerging No. 1 wideout Zay Flowers to make any sort of impact on this offense.

"Worthy is a heck of a player, an explosive guy, a guy that I liked a lot as a prospect," DeCosta said. "But looking at him, he's a little bit like a Zay/'Hollywood' Brown type of guy. We have a Zay. For us, we were looking for a different body type this year. We were looking for an outside big-bodied guy."

Eric DeCosta declares Nate Wiggins better fit for Ravens than Xavier Worthy

Wiggins may have some weight issues he needs to overcome, but a young player like him being handed an NFL nutrition team will get up to speed. His raw talent on the outside is obvious, and his 4.28 40-yard dash shows up all the time when examining his film.

DeCosta seems to subscribe to the idea that Worthy will have a tough time adjusting to the pros. John Ross proved that speed alone will not make a great player, and Worthy's extremely slight frame and issues with drops could make life tough against standouts like Wiggins early in his career.

The Ravens have historically been very successful when using a first-round pick on a defensive back. If Wiggins is as good as the Ravens say he is (and Worthy also stars for Kansas City), another new wrinkle will be added to one of the NFL's best current rivalries.