Rachaad White’s status on pre-draft big boards across all outlets did not seem to sit well in the minds of ASU fans.
In hindsight, reasonably so.
The selection is not much of a surprise for Sun Devil Nation as it may be for some, but with the 91st pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers selected ASU running back Rachaad White. White was the fourth running back selected in the draft after Breece Hall (Iowa State), Kenneth Walker III (Michigan State) and James Cook (Georgia).
Some big boards placed White as low as the 12th-best running back in the class.
Rachaad White is your newest Bucs RB. pic.twitter.com/wBTd2ymL8Q— JC Cornell (@CornellNFL) April 30, 2022
White took a winding road to Tempe that started in Nebraska at Division II Nebraska-Kearney where he redshirted his freshman year. Before ever playing a down, White transferred to Mt. San Antonio College, a juco powerhouse that has produced NFL talent such as Delanie Walker, Antonio Pierce (ahem), Bruce Irvin and more.
At Mt. SAC, White worked his way to juco All-American and a three-star transfer rating. Soon enough, former Mt. SAC product Pierce, then the Sun Devils’ recruiting coordinator, reeled White into Tempe.
White immediately split carries at ASU, and exploded for a 133 yard, three touchdown performance against rival Arizona in Tucson in a 70-7 victory. In the shortened 2020 season, fans were impressed with White’s dynamic ability in the backfield as a pass-catcher and true runner.
One thing that’s been missing from the Bucs running situation is a pass catcher. Rachaad White makes it look as natural as running the ball pic.twitter.com/MKpzQi56Pc— Ashlie (@EMT_Ashlie) April 30, 2022
Leading into 2021, expectations were high for White and tandem-mate Chip Trayanum, but soon enough, White became the feature back. He rushed for 1000 yards, caught 450 more, and scored 16 times total on 5.5 yards per-carry.
Pro Football Focus ranked him the second-highest player in the Pac-12 last season for all positions.
His drill numbers are considered slightly above average for his 6-foot-even, 200 pound frame. The 4.48 40-yard dash and a solid Senior Bowl performance opened eyes and slightly improved his composite draft stock.
Draft experts praised White’s vision, versatility, and playmaking skills, but his “slow-to-go” approach and run-blocking have raised concerns.
White joins a talented running back room in Tampa, but could easily compete for snaps right away. He will join the likes of Leonard Fournette, Ke’Shawn Vaughn and Giovani Bernard in the running back room that sees Tom Brady as quarterback after returning from a short retirement.
White was the seventh-ranked running back on the NFL Mock Draft Composite that compiles big boards from NFL Draft experts.