NFL draft profile: No. 27 — LSU CB Tre'Davious White, finesse corner with great instincts

LSU CB-PR Tre’Davious White
5-foot-11, 192 pounds

Key stat: Intercepted six passes in 47 career starts at cornerback. Returned 44 career punts for 493 yards with three TDs, one each of his final three seasons.

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The skinny: Five-star recruit who opted to stay home and sign with the Tigers. Started his third college game as a true freshman in 2013, never left the lineup (save for one game missed with injury) and has been one of the school’s best cover men and returners since then. Considered declaring early following junior season in 2015, but he made the wise decision to return for senior year and had his best season despite a midseason coaching change. Chosen to wear the coveted No. 18 uniform, given to the football player the past dozen years whose “selfless attitude that has become the epitome of being an LSU football player,” during his final two seasons.

LSU CB Tre’Davious White (R) is a strong man-coverage option. (AP)
LSU CB Tre’Davious White (R) is a strong man-coverage option. (AP)

Best-suited destination: White can be used as an outside corner or a slot corner in press or off-man coverage and also should immediately upgrade an NFL team’s punt return capabilities. Teams such as the Oakland Raiders, Cincinnati Bengals, Philadelphia Eagles, Los Angeles Rams, New England Patriots, Chicago Bears, Washington Redskins, New York Giants, Kansas City Chiefs, Minnesota Vikings, Detroit Lions, Denver Broncos and others should value White’s skill set.

Upside: Very good man instincts. Sticks in receivers’ hip pockets, even shiftier and quicker ones. Well-conditioned athlete who doesn’t tire in the fourth quarter, even in extreme conditions — can play all day or night. Arm length is good for his size. Jumps passes well with good instincts. Allowed fewer than 50 percent of passes thrown against him in 2016 to be completed and knocked away 14 balls despite most teams not challenging him often. Closes in a flash. Tracks the deep ball well and rarely lets receivers get past him (see Texas A&M, Alabama games). Surprisingly good tackler for his size. Likes to take on big challenges and rises to the occasion. Great versatility — can play inside and outside (left, right, field, boundary, you name it) and has shown improvement in zone coverage. Strong special-teams value, not only as a punt returner but as a gunner.

Downside: Limited size and might not be able to reroute bigger receivers, especially in press-man or zone coverage. Been a bit hot and cold in his career — strong in 2014, off in 2015 and good again in 2016. Tallied only six career picks despite being in position to make more plays (missed opportunities for two INTs vs. Texas A&M). Will bite on double moves and get too greedy. Can be set up early in games. Covered well on back end by one of the nation’s best safeties, Jamal Adams, the past two seasons. Elite speed (see 2015 bowl game vs. Texas Tech) and size have given White trouble in the past. Will let receivers cross his face and gain a step on him, which happened late against A&M:

LSU CB Tre’Davious White lost the Texas A&M receiver on the slant pattern for a TD. (Draftbreakdown.com, via YouTube)
LSU CB Tre’Davious White lost the Texas A&M receiver on the slant pattern for a TD. (Draftbreakdown.com, via YouTube)

Appears to avoid contact at times. Not a forceful run defender and more of a drag-down ankle tackler. Zone instincts — namely his eyes — need to be honed. Not a truly explosive athlete.

Scouting hot take: “He’s really good, and he looked like he took a big step up [from 2015 to 2016]. He ran a few routes for our guy, I’ll tell you that.” — SEC offensive assistant

Player comp: Adam Jones

Expected draft range: Top 40 picks

Previous profiles

Nos. 51-100: Here’s who just missed the cut
No. 50: Indiana OG-C Dan Feeney
No. 49: Iowa DB Desmond King
No. 48: Vanderbilt LB Zach Cunningham
No. 47: Wisconsin pass rusher T.J. Watt
No. 46. Alabama pass rusher Tim Williams
No. 45. Washington CB Sidney Jones
No. 44. Alabama LB Ryan Anderson
No. 43. Ohio State WR-RB Curtis Samuel
No. 42. Florida DT Caleb Brantley
No. 41. Connecticut DB Obi Melifonwu
No. 40. USC CB-KR Adoree’ Jackson
No. 39. Texas Tech QB Patrick Mahomes
No. 38. Michigan State DL Malik McDowell
No. 37: Ole Miss TE Evan Engram
No. 36: Florida LB Jarrad Davis
No. 35: Washington S Budda Baker
No. 34: Oklahoma RB Joe Mixon
No. 33: Alabama CB Marlon Humphrey
No. 32: Florida CB Quincy Wilson
No. 31: Tennessee RB Alvin Kamara
No. 30: Michigan DB-RS Jabrill Peppers
No. 29: Alabama OT Cam Robinson
No. 28: Notre Dame QB DeShone Kizer

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Eric Edholm is a writer for Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at edholm@yahoo-inc.com or follow him on Twitter!

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