Name: Devin White
Ht/Wt: 6-0, 237
40-yard dash: 4.42 seconds
Bench: 22 reps
Vertical: 39.5 inches
Broad: 118.0 inches
3-cone: 7.07 seconds
20-yard shuttle: 4.17 seconds
How he fits: The Lions return all three starters from last season at linebacker – Jarrad Davis, Christian Jones and Devon Kennard – and have veteran reserves in Jalen Reeves-Maybin and Steve Longa under contract, but there’s always room for a young playmaker at the position, which White looks like he can be.
The speed is what really stands out about White’s game. He’s a true sideline-to-sideline defender, and his speed really shows up when he’s asked to cover tight ends or backs. Teams need linebackers who can cover some of the league’s best tight ends and dual-threat running backs, and that was a strength of White’s in college.
We saw last year how productive Davis could be rushing the passer in the Lions' defensive scheme (6.0 sacks). White was graded the most productive pass rusher among draft-eligible linebackers by Pro Football Focus last season with 30 pressures on 86 pass rush attempts.
Paired alongside Davis, the two could potentially form a speedy and explosive young duo in the middle of Detroit’s defense. White can run, cover and blitz, which are all the necessary tools to be a good linebacker in this league.
Key observations: A converted high school running back, White won the Butkus Award as the nation’s top linebacker this past season after recording 123 tackles and 12 tackles for loss. He had 133 tackles and 14 tackles for loss as a sophomore.
White became a LSU permanent captain as a sophomore, which speaks highly of his character and leadership.
White owns and rides horses as an off-the-field hobby.
View photos of NFL prospect Devin White.
What they had to say about him: “White is still learning to take on blocks and play with better control/efficiency, but he's a willing pupil and coaching should improve both areas. White's work ethic, competitiveness, and rare play speed are elements that can't be taught and should push him into an early starter's role and a successful NFL career.” – Lance Zierlein, NFL.com
How he stacks up: White and Michigan’s Devin Bush are the consensus top two inside linebackers available in this draft. Most draft analysts consider Alabama’s Mack Wilson to be the third.
Scouts Inc. lists White as the No. 4 overall prospect in the draft behind only Nick Bosa, Quinnen Williams and Josh Allen.
White comes in as the No. 6 overall prospect on Mel Kiper Jr.’s Big Board.
He’s No. 8 on Daniel Jeremiah’s latest list of the top 50 players available in the draft.
What he had to say: “It’s very important for me to be in the top inside linebacker in this draft,” White told reporters at the Combine. “I feel like I put the work in, I showed it throughout my career, I progressed every year, I did everything right on and off the field as far as being a great guy, having that attitude, going to work every day and leading my team. That was the biggest thing.
“I was the leader of my team. I was named the team captain two years in a row, as a sophomore and a junior. I have been doing all the formal interviews and knocking them out of the park. I am just doing everything right.”