2019 Raiders Draft Prospect Profile
Name: Devin White
Weight: 240 pounds
Round Projection: First
With White, tackling is the most impressive trait on film. In traffic, White can knife through to make the stop. On the other hand, he appears comfortable in open space. Depending on the situation, White cleverly alters his approach. More importantly, the drive and hip snap jumps off the screen. Moreover, White takes the angle where the ballcarrier cannot grab an extra yard.
White’s functional football strength looks better due to his explosion, technique, and ability to defeat blockers and makes plays. However, when attacking larger backs, White wins those battles. You will see very few broken tackles and play continuation.
Outside of tackling, White’s speed changes games. If he blitzes the A gap, he looks untouched on his way to the quarterback. Comparatively, he makes the sideline plays with equal aplomb. White gets up to top speed in a hurry, leaving blockers flatfooted. When trailing, White keeps up with backs, from the flat to the seam.
During his time in Baton Rouge, White worked on foot/eye coordination. In the beginning, misdirection would cause him to overcompensate and drift too far. Now, he uses an economy of steps with an eye on breaking the other way, if they play travels there.
In Paul Guenther’s offense, White would fill the role of Vontaze Burfict without the dirty play, numerous suspensions, and general foolery. White fits the middle perfectly. First, he flows downhill towards the ballcarrier. Next, when he does blitz, he already knows how to attack the A gap when rushing, a staple of the Guenther defense.
Despite earning a reputation for strong tackling, White remains cognizant of his surroundings. In both videos, you can see sidelines plays where White draws a bead on the ballcarrier, but he realizes the sideline and just bumps them out of bounds. While this does not appear like a big deal, understand the current NFL culture. If White drives the opponent with force, you never know when an official will get flag happy.
During Reggie McKenzie’s tenure, the Raiders continue to lack a playmaker at middle linebacker. Through failed draft picks and free agency, Oakland could not secure a younger starter. Yet, White provides the Raiders a legitimate chance to shore up the position for the next eight years. Additionally, with two first round picks, White could be an option. At this point, no one knows what the defense will evolve into. Yet, right now, the Raiders cannot make plays on that side of the ball. In 2016, the Raiders chose Jihad Ward eight spots ahead of Deion Jones. That remains the most underrated failure of this administration.