As if there wasn’t already high expectations for the impending rookie class of 2019, analysts have already begun predicting which rookie will be the best by the end of the season.

Nine experts on a panel at ESPN gave their predictions for who will win defensive rookie of the year, and out of that group, both Mike Clay and Field Yates picked Bucs’ linebacker Devin White to win the award.

White was picked fifth overall out of LSU and was the first linebacker selected in the first round by the Bucs since Derrick Brooks in 1995. Not many middle linebackers are picked as high in the draft as White was, but many believe he is a one of a kind talent.

He is expected to come into a starting role along side Lavonte David to help reshape a new Bucs defense under Bruce Arians and Todd Bowles. White has the ideal speed after running a 4.42 at the Combine, which is a staple for Bowles’ defense. Even beyond the talent, White was a two-year captain as an underclassman at LSU, bringing the type of leadership to the Bucs now that every coach looks for in a player.

These are the comments that Yates and Clay had as their reasoning for picking White as the defensive rookie of the year.

“New Buccaneers DC Todd Bowles used some combination of David Harris, Demario Davis, Darron Lee and Avery Williamson as every-down duos in his four seasons with the Jets. That suggests White will be a full-time player next to Lavonte David this season, which means a ton of opportunities for tackles and big plays.” – Mike Clay.

“The Bucs linebacker checks a ton of the boxes that portend immediate success: a terrific prospect who fills the largest need on a Bucs defense that should improve under coordinator Todd Bowles. Linebackers also stuff the stat sheet; 100 tackles should be no surprise.”  – Field Yates.

You can see the full article with every experts pick here.

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About the Author: Matt Matera

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Buc stops here
Buc stops here
3 years ago

Expectations are high and as a fan I get it – just want him to deliver. There have been plenty of players with high expectations and due to injury or other factors never amount to anything. Just hope nothing but good happens with him.

Wausa
Wausa
3 years ago

I am glad Devin is a Buc, but ESPN is almost always wrong in their predictions.

Buc76
Buc76
3 years ago

Isn’t he the highest drafted linebacker ever? He better be the Rookie of the Year! Doubtful it will happen here though.

BUC-ASS-BOB
BUC-ASS-BOB
3 years ago

White dominated in college do to speed and ability however he needs a couple years to develop technique I’m sure he will become a good linebacker but do not expect too much from him his first year

BigSombrero
BigSombrero
3 years ago

Field Yates and Mike Clay are fantasy guys. Fantasy guys base decisions on stats. The largest stat line for a defensive player is tackles. Linebackers have the easiest path to putting up biggest tackle numbers. So it’s logical they would favor the highest selected linebacker.

I saw a different article on NFL.com that argues Devin Bush in Pittsburgh has the inside track to the award.

In the end, the award winner will be the player who helped his team win the most games while making a big contribution.

Good luck to Devin White and the Bucs!

nybuccguy
nybuccguy
3 years ago

Hes a shitty tackler and takes bad angles. Passing on Allen and Oliver was a disgrace.

Doctor_Berto
Doctor_Berto
3 years ago

Aaron Curry was drafted at #4 and was a can’t miss prospect. We all know how that ended up. That being said, I think Devin will ball out this season.

SenileSenior
SenileSenior
3 years ago

I am with you on this one Buc-Ass-Bob. I don’t know that White will be the Rookie of the Year. From what has been reported here on PR I understood even before the draft that he has only played the position for three years. He has a lot to learn about reading offenses for example. I can’t wait to see how much he progresses by say mid season of 2020. Meanwhile, I look forward to seeing him EARN the starting job on day one of this season. Will he learn fast enough or will he just be thrown out there… Read more »

ayron54
ayron54
3 years ago

SenileSenior, Lets not forget (no pun intended) he played and got his scholarship to LSU as a running back. That should help him know offense’s extremely well or at least make a quick study of it. I love the fact we are switching to a 3-4 and now finally Lavonte can quite possibly get the recognition he has been getting over looked on. I also think the Bucs make it a point to give White every possibility to be rookie of the year! Its time for the culture to change and as fans lets start with us and stop all… Read more »

Dman
Dman
3 years ago

D Rookie of the Year and the guy hasn’t even put on a practice uniform. Get a grip. And for all those guys posting what a bad pick White is, I guarantee they’ve never watched him and are just regurgitating draft board garbage. I watched this guy destroy offenses in the SEC last season, not the MAC, not the ACC, not the Big 10, not the PAC 12 or Big 12. I will tell you my picks in order would have been Q. Williams, J. Allen and then D. White. That said, White is the real deal and if he… Read more »

SenileSenior
SenileSenior
3 years ago

Yes, I forgot. Running backs do have to see the game from a different viewpoint than other positions. Various experience help give a guy flexibility in thinking. That should help him shorten his learning curve. I am sure he has a good foundation to build on.
______________________
Culture Change, Team=>Fans
Go Bucs!!!!! Win Now!

MizzouBucs24
MizzouBucs24
3 years ago

you are 100% right about L. David finally getting the recognition he deserves. This guy has been an outside LB in a 4-3 that has to compete with OLB from 3-4s. It is two completely different positions. With his abilities, he is an instant top 5 inside backer and and with White, they could be one of the top linebacker duos in the league. Watching those two blitz and run around will be fun to watch!!!

seat26
seat26
3 years ago

Way Too Early. But if it happens it might save Licht’s job. He could use a few breaks. Instead of just broken bones.

Jeffbuc
Jeffbuc
3 years ago

I don’t know what player some of negative nancies watched. But I will agree with above poster and say you guys never have seen white play and are just listening to what some message board says. The games I watched and all film I watched since we drafted him. I saw a linebacker with uncanny vision that always seems to take the right path to the ball carrier. You just see a big cluster of lineman and then 40 shoot through clean and make the tackle. I think being an ex runningback helped him a lot with that. He knows… Read more »

BadgerW4
BadgerW4
3 years ago

I thought it interesting Devin Bush had more people voting for him than Devin White.

2Gz_Like_GUCCI
2Gz_Like_GUCCI
3 years ago

Let’s Go Fuccin Bucs#Devin White45 might be the turning point for us

scubog
scubog
3 years ago

: Here’s a hint……..Steeler vs Bucs………hmmmmmmm.

jongruden
jongruden
3 years ago

I think Murray in AZ wins the award but defensive rookie of the yr I could see White or Bush

scubog
scubog
3 years ago

Welcome back JonnyG

JC1145
JC1145
3 years ago

Most knowledgeable prognosticators pick the Bucs to win no more than six or seven games and some predict fewer than that. Defensive ROYs rarely come from teams with losing records. That being said, I believe he’s going to be an outstanding player.