Did Success Hurt Devin White?

January 30th, 2023

Joe always pays attention when lifelong Buccaneers fan and former Bucs quarterback Shaun King talks about his beloved team.

King dove in head first during his recent visit to the Locked on Bucs podcast. The pride of St. Petersburg and VSiN host is always about what’s best for the Bucs long-term. He’s not trying to make anyone feel good.

One subject that drew some chatter was linebacker play.

Pending free agent Lavonte David? Keep him, says King.

“There were some guys on defense I was not happy with their performances this year. Lavonte David was not one of them,” King said. “You know, I still thought he played with the same love for the game, the same enthusiasm unknown to mankind that made him a fan favorite.”

Joe will note that David edged Devin White for the team lead in tackles. King says David is a “Ring of Honor guy” and the Bucs should find a way to make him a Buc for life. King even approached hallowed ground when comparing David’s stature to that of Derrick Brooks’.

Devin White? He’s got a lot to show in 2023, the last year of his contract. King thinks the big spotlight and a fat wallet got to White a bit.

“I don’t think he maybe handled success as well as he anticipated,” King said. “… I didn’t think he played [in 2022] with the same level of physicality that he had played with in years previous.”

King said White’s occasional effort-related criticism is justified but only the Bucs know if injuries played a role in White’s decline. Bottom line, per King, White needs to turn in an All-Pro type season 2023 if he wants to get a huge contract in free agency the following year.

King added that he expects White to have that big bounceback year and the Bucs’ success in 2023 likely depends on it.

59 Responses to “Did Success Hurt Devin White?”

  1. Pryda sec 147 Says:

    Yes he needs AP season I need this man to get some picks

  2. YucsBall Says:

    White is not that good. Like a dog chasing cars.

  3. NEfan Says:

    One of the most undiscipline player on the team. You expect that from from a spoiled premadona WR or QB but not a player that is supposed to be the glue on D. Piss poor techniques. He needs a good LB coach to teach him better fundamentals then he will be a monster.

  4. mark2001 Says:

    People handle success in different ways. In some, it makes them strive to be even better. Others figure they have arrived. Human nature.

  5. AlwaysBucs Says:

    White handled success better than King did. If King hit the film room or gym as hard as he hit his favorite restaurants he wouldn’t have been replaced so quickly after he was dragged to the NFC title game by a historic d.

  6. Northend Says:

    He should be moved outside to OLB. He would be a beast,and it fits his style of play. It did wonders for Hassan Reddick. Just sayin

  7. Dan in largo Says:

    Well there goes Kellen Moore

  8. Your Mom Says:

    Probably shouldn’t make assumptions about motivations… if White was playing through an injury, then the idea that “he didn’t handle success well” is hogwash.

  9. mark2001 Says:

    Good trip down memory lane, Always. That 99 D was probably one of the best the league has ever seen. If King could have made one step forward, we might have been looking about more SB’s. But he seemed to go the other direction. Sadly, many don’t learn the dangers of success until it is too late.

  10. mark2001 Says:

    Your. Everyone plays through injuries. The question has to do with his reads and being in position to make the plays. I’m certainly not as knowledgeable as DR and some others in it, but have heard his mistakes often seemed more mental than physical…not playing under control to the extent he should have.

  11. Goatfarmer Says:

    King loved the Bucs so much he quit working, didn’t study, didn’t know the playbook, got fat and lazy, and ate himself out of the league. I have no respect for him.

    However I agree with him on this subject.

  12. Bucsfanman Says:

    DW was definitely a disappointment last year. I’d like to see a LOT more from him and others on this defense.

  13. Sailing away Says:

    I heard an interview with one of pro football focuses (PFF) analyst commenting on Devin White saying (I’m paraphrasing) he makes some great splash plays but we find him out of position alot….hence his lower PFF grade. Some don’t like PFF but White needs to improve next year alot if he wants a big bag and to be thought of as worthy of a #5 overall pick.

  14. Bobby M. Says:

    White is a one trick pony….he’s not remotely close to being an all around LB. Terrible angles, poor technique in tackling, even worse in pass coverage. He’s solid against the run IF Vea is playing and he’s excellent at blitzing. He’s not going to evolve much more.

  15. SB~LV Says:

    He is a bonehead !
    Equal to the Jameis of the defense
    Monte Kiffin would need dental implants from chewing DW’s azz

  16. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Chargers announce Kellen Moore as their new offensive coordinator.

    Ah well. Guess it wasn’t meant to be.

  17. Beej Says:

    Would be more useful as an edge rusher. Beat the tackle and get to the dude with the ball. He can probably focus on that

  18. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Look at you chumps down on White, lol.

    I’ll tell you something…Devin White is the kind of player who is motivated by a down year.

    You just watch him this year. He’ll take over that defense.

    And so far as Lavante David? Well, time to let him walk. He’s only going to go downhill from here.

  19. stpetebucfan Says:

    “He needs a good LB coach to teach him”

    Can anybody say DB55? I suspect he’s had some convos with DW45 but maybe during training camp some super challenging post graduate work?

  20. sasquatch Says:

    Trade Devin White and use his money to re-sign Lavonte. Makes infinitely more sense than keeping him, and then next year either paying him 20 million per year or having him walk with nothing in return.

    White is garbage.

  21. kyle Says:

    sorry, cant justify breaking the bank for devin white…hes been a disappointment for a top 5 pick. Hes supposed to be a ray lewis type with that draft pick???

    He flashed in the Sb run for sure, he seems immature w his interviews.

    What other options do we have? they better draft a lb or cb with that 19th pick…id franchise tag white until he is more consistent.

  22. Tap-Out Says:

    @Joe….check ModHairKen or I will!

  23. sasquatch Says:

    kyle Says:
    January 30th, 2023 at 3:14 pm

    …id franchise tag white until he is more consistent.

    Well, he’s not a free agent, and even if he were I wouldn’t give him the kind of money he’d get on a tag, not even for one year. We need to cut ties with that bum and hopefully get something in return while we still can.

  24. Joe Swanson Says:

    Shop him before the draft if you can get a high second round pick fine if not draft a mlb in the mid rounds and let White go from middle to edge like Dallas used Parsons.

  25. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Devin White is a product of coaching failure……just like many other Bucs….the team has taken on it’s coach’s unemotional personality.

  26. Rod Munch Says:


    You have one of the best interior pass rushers in the NFL who stinks in coverage – so here’s a simple solution you morons running the team, DON’T USE WHITE IN COVERAGE! Have him running forward on literally every play – when you do that, the defense has success. When you have him drop into a soft zone coverage, the team doesn’t have success.

    Good coaches know how to use their players and get the most out of their abilities. Terrible coaches don’t use players to the best of their abilities, and instead put a square peg in a round hole, then blame the player for not fitting.

  27. deuceswild78 Says:

    He is a middle LB best suited for an era that has come and gone. all you have to do is go spread and pass and he is rendered useless. He takes terrible angles which in turn makes him look whipped so often

  28. A Bucs Fan Says:

    I think Devin is being played out of position too often. He’s not a coverage linebacker, and is best utilized as a pass rusher. Like sticking a round peg in square hole.

    With that said, I think his tackling ability has declined year over year since his rookie season. Last season was his worst by far.

    Hopefully he bounces back, but I have my doubts. He’ll be gone after next year.

  29. Yucs2Bucs Says:

    I’ll take Jordan Love in a heartbeat!!!! That young man when given a chance is going to be very similar to Mahomes !!! Go Yucs, but have to say that game last night along with the questionable refs is making it easier to think the game is rigged. Two Non White QBs facing off for the first time in the Super Bowl is awesome and also Andy Reid playing his old team builds excitement and sells tickets and bigger audience !!! Dwight Smith still tells me because we spoke this morning and said are you starting to believe me yet ? Why we he and others say that and for my 10 years of friendship and winning a Super Bowl you think he would be happy and not always go back to this game being rigged and fans getting played

  30. Yucs2Bucs Says:

    And TB is going to Miami and watch them win next year

  31. TAMPA BAY DEMON™ Says:

    If it did, than he is weak.
    Success should only make you want to BUILD on that success.

  32. TAMPA BAY DEMON™ Says:

    Rod Munch Says:
    You have one of the best interior pass rushers in the NFL who stinks in coverage”

    Funny you mention this. I was wondering about it earlier this season. Do you think there is any way that Devin White could be utilized in a fashion similar to Micah Parsons?

  33. Beej Says:

    White had a PFF rating of 45 last year. Almost any linebacker on a practice squad can do that

  34. jimm Says:

    i think he has demonstrated that his strengths and skills are being misused. he is playing the wrong position. his mind is not quick enough to be a middle linebacker. give him fewer things to focus on, take away his responsibilities related to defensive communication and see if he can win some one-on-ones off the edge.

  35. Jon Grudin Says:

    Yes. Everyone can see it too which is why Joe isn’t posting the same question about Carlton Davis. It took away the “Eye of the Tiger”. When you are fat and happy and no longer lean and hungry the drive to excel is diminished.

    Speaking of Fat and Happy and diminished drive to excel, when is Joe going to call out Vita Vea for grabbing a big check, reporting grossly overweight and only being able to be a 50% snap player. At least it seems like 50%. Joe can you publish 2022 availability % for the defensive starters?

  36. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    LOL< Just as I predicted about Kellen Moore. Did anyone really think that he was gonna trade a chance to coach Justin Hebert Plus live in Beautiful San Diego to come to Tampa ?

  37. Infomeplease Says:

    Apparently, DW is capable of all pro status! Of course like everything in life, you get out what you put in!!! Like some other teammates, he was mediocre at best this past season!!

  38. unbelievable Says:

    Probably the first (and maybe last) time I’ll ever say this, but I agree with King 100%.

    LVD is the best linebacker we have, and one of the only consistently bright spots on our defense. Make this man a Buc for life.

    Devin White is overrated, plain and simple. He’s a one trick pony, so let’s stop asking him to attempt other tricks at this point.

  39. Bucs Guy Says:

    Trade White now while you can get something for him.

  40. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Wow. So glad you guys are not making the decisions, lol. Be careful not to throw out the baby with the wash.

  41. Beej Says:

    Does the baby have a PFF of 45?

  42. Buc4evr Says:

    What a mess. The hype around players like White is not warranted. A lot of these highly rated players are either past their prime or just mediocre. White is just mediocre. JTS was overhyped. The guy just doesn’t have it. Hicks is way past his prime. We need a new HC and a realistic view of what needs to be done to rebuild this slow aging team. Coaching and management ineptitude has a lot to do with this disaster. Time to rebuild.

  43. JimbobBucsFan Says:

    The answer is yes.

  44. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    White can rush the passer……should be used as an OLB instead of in coverage……
    And, if we get rid of him, we’ll have to replace him with a high draft pick….and the need to replace LVD is also arriving.
    We could probably get a 3rd round pick for him….maybe a 2nd to the right team.
    If you want to gut the team….trade White, Wirfs, Evans, Godwin, AWJ & Davis…..bank a bunch of draft picks and completely rebuild.
    TBBF is much more in favor of getting a lot younger…..
    Brady, Rudolph, Hicks, Gholston, Jones, Bernard, Succop, Ryan & LVD are all older players & all FAs…..to just let them go would be a good start.

  45. Larrd Says:

    He seems a little dumb. Put him on the edge and let him chase the qb full time. He’d get 20 sacks and do great chasing rbs down the line of scrimmage.

    Then draft the backer from Iowa. Jack Campbell?

  46. sasquatch Says:

    Devin White is a DUMB AF legend-in-his-own-mind.

    Trade him, get something for him.

    You can’t really avoid having your ILB drop in coverage a fair portion of the time. And he’s not an edge guy. Anybody remember him rushing from the outside? Watch his movement — he just doesn’t look like he’s built to bend the edge. He’s not long. He’s fast and sudden, but kinda straight-linish. He is not Micah Parsons.

    Trade him.

  47. Jmarkbuc Says:


    More like the OJ Howard of the defense..

    Way to go JLicht..!

  48. mark2001 Says:

    Jmark… maybe more like a “squirrel, squirrel…see the squirrel, chase the squirrel”… ha ha, we went the other way…Touchdown.

  49. Winky Says:

    I’d be okay if the Bucs parted with White

  50. Jmarkbuc Says:


    Another wasted Licht draft pick.. Kwon part deux , is probably most accurate.

  51. DoooshLaRue Says:

    Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:
    January 30th, 2023 at 4:10 pm
    LOL< Just as I predicted about Kellen Moore. Did anyone really think that he was gonna trade a chance to coach Justin Hebert Plus live in Beautiful San Diego to come to Tampa ?

    It's the Los Angeles Chargers isn't it?

  52. Bring back the lawn chairs Says:

    Devon white is very fast and strong too. He just didn’t have suh in front of him eating up those blockers and maintaining gap control this year and it showed bigtime in my opinion.

  53. ChiBuc Says:

    Everything, everyone, everywhere declines under Todd’s tutelage.

  54. Goatfarmer Says:

    Devin be who he be. An overrated, overhyped, all talk diva who freelances too often and doesn’t know his assignments, doesn’t study, doesn’t tackle well. Trade him while you can for some value.

  55. View from 132 Says:

    Anyone that celebrates big hits when you give up a first down does not understand the game.

  56. captivajim Says:

    what success?? trade him for needed O-Line guys …..

  57. BucsBeBack (Artist formally known as: BringBucsBack) Says:

    Never worthy of the “C” on his chest! Why not David?

  58. Brandon Says:

    Goatfarmer Says:
    January 30th, 2023 at 2:44 pm
    King loved the Bucs so much he quit working, didn’t study, didn’t know the playbook, got fat and lazy, and ate himself out of the league. I have no respect for him.


    But yet he still worked harder, knows more, played more, has more insight, more football knowledge, than any other journalist that’s out there… but you don’t care for him because he was an average starting QB in the NFL. Other journalists couldn’t have even made the intramural co-ed flag football team in college.

  59. Ben Harvey Says:

    White is slippin. He relies too much on physical traits vs mental side of the game. Needs to develop more pass rush moves in addition to being a better cover guy some holes for sure, just waiting for him to put it together.