Devin White was selected fifth overall in the 2019 NFL draft by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Despite White being six foot two and weighing two hundred and thirty-seven pounds he is one of the fastest linebackers in the NFL.
Watching him play on Sundays leaves many fans wondering what Devin White’s 40-time is.
Devin White ran an official 40-time of 4.42 at the 2019 NFL Combine. At his size, this was an incredibly impressive speed and was part of the reason that White was drafted so with such a high pick.
An official 40 time is different from an unofficial time. Official 40 times are recorded using electronic timing which produces a very accurate result.
Unofficial 40 times are usually recorded using stopwatches which can be inaccurate due to human error.
Pre Draft Strengths And Weaknesses
Like all linebacker prospects that enter the league, Devin White had a fair number of strengths and weaknesses in his game.
Now that White has spent a few years in the NFL we can look back at these pre-draft opinions and see how accurate they are.
Weight-room champ with impressive strength numbers across the board
One of the positives regarding Devin White coming out of college was the strength he displayed in the weight room.
White’s natural strength paired with his speed displayed that he had all the intangible athletics to be a high-quality linebacker in the NFL.
Once the scouts learned of Devin White’s 40 time and strength all that was left was seeing White perform in-game.
In the NFL White’s strength lived up to its pre-draft billing. To play the linebacker position you need some serious strength to stop the run.
White has displayed this and shown an ability to take on blocks from tight ends and tackle running backs when they get past the defensive line.
A voracious student of the game
Another added benefit about Devin White as a prospect was that this player constantly worked on improving his understanding of the game.
Entering the NFL White did not have the best instincts when it came to diagnosing players or realizing fakes.
Though White continued to work on these aspects of his game and improved them throughout his career.
In the NFL this has been a continuous process for White though his instincts and abilities to read plays have improved with experience.
Quick-twitch trigger with big burst to close
As a linebacker, White displayed a great ability to react and attack ball carriers once the play is diagnosed.
Devin White’s 4.42 40-time paired with his quick reaction skills allowed him to chase down ball carriers before they are able to get to the secondary.
In the NFL this has proved to be one of White’s biggest assets. Watching his games on Sundays you will often notice him bursting into the backfield to wrap up a ball carrier.
Uses shoulder challenges with hands as an afterthought
One of the knocks against White as a prospect was that he often hit players with his shoulders instead of wrapping them up with his arms.
As a larger more athletic player this worked for White in college but against larger NFL players this style of tackling could present some large issues.
Fortunately, White worked on this part of his game and has become much more consistent wrapping players up when going for the tackle.