The Marty Smith Podcast: Devin White Explains the Biggest Difference Between Playing at LSU and the NFL, Shares What He’s Learned From Iconic QB Tom Brady

by Chris Haney

It’s not everyday you get to speak with a Super Bowl champion, but the hosts of The Marty Smith Podcast are doing exactly that on this week’s new episode as they welcome the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ All-Pro linebacker Devin White. The 2022 NFL regular season is almost upon us as Week 1 kicks off on September 8. So the guys are talking to the former LSU Tiger about all things football and more on the podcast this week.

Before they interview Devin White though, Marty Smith and his co-host Wes Blankenship catch up and joke around about plenty. Marty goes on an epic rant about how much he hates I-95, which he call’s “Satan’s sidewalk.” He’ll go out of his way to not drive on I-95, even if it takes significantly longer. “Count me as the president of the I-95 hatred unit,” Smith amusingly said on the podcast.

The guys also chat about having to use actual physical maps in the years before we all had GPS on our phones. They also all agree that Croakies, pleated khakis, and cargo shorts should be banned unless being used under very specific circumstances. That’s right, The Marty Smith Podcast is here to tackle some of life’s most important topics. Well, that might not exactly be the case, but they’ll at least make you laugh, which you’ll do repeatedly early on in this episode.

After an amusing opening segment, linebacker Devin White joins the program. The Bucs player selected fifth overall in the 2019 NFL Draft talks about his university and their chances for the upcoming SEC football season. He speaks about LSU hiring head coach Brian Kelly, and opens up about his transition from college to the NFL. White chats about playing with the GOAT, Tom Brady, and also dives into his well-known love for horses. We’ve got all of that and much more on another great episode of The Marty Smith Podcast.

Devin White Shares the Biggest Difference in Playing College Football Compared to the NFL

Tampa Bay Buccaneers star Devin White is headed into his fourth season as an NFL pro. The 6-foot, 238-pound linebacker was a standout performer during his time in Baton Rouge at LSU. And he’s already made his mark on the NFL in his short pro career to date.

White is already an anchor of the linebacking core in Tampa, and already has a stacked sheet of career highlights and awards. He made the All-Rookie team in his first season, and has become an All-Pro and a Pro Bowler in the past two seasons. In his second season with the Bucs, he contributed heavily on defense as Tampa marched on to a Super Bowl LV victory.

While Devin White seems to be performing on pro gridirons just fine, there were still some adjustments as he made the transition from the SEC to the NFL. The Marty Smith Podcast host knew there had to be some challenges, even though White has done a great job making the transition from college to pro so far.

“When you got to the league, what was the greatest jump? What part of the game, whether it’s preparation, speed, whatever, was the biggest difference for you personally?” Marty Smith asked his guest.

“I think the biggest jump from college to the NFL is just preparation,” Devin White explained. “Like you know being pro ready, knowing what’s going on, understanding concepts of the NFL. Because what you can make up with pure speed in college, you can’t do it in the NFL. Everything is on a string. The timing isn’t the same [in college] as it is in the NFL… I think the NFL is like clockwork, so I’d say preparation.”

However, White also thinks that he and his fellow LSU Tigers have a leg up on many college football players heading to the league. Since LSU plays in the SEC, which is the undisputed top college football conference in the nation, they see a different level of competition each week. Players coming out of LSU, Alabama, UGA, etc. are used to playing against future pros week in and week out.

“We’re very pro ready” White said of LSU players on The Marty Smith Podcast. “The transition to the NFL, as far as body and style of play, it was easy. That’s why I said everything was more mental. Just sharpening the mental tools enough to be able to play in the NFL.”

Devin White Opens Up About Playing with the GOAT – Tom Brady

You knew we couldn’t get through the podcast without speaking to Devin White about playing alongside one of the NFL’s greatest of all-time. In March of 2020, Tom Brady stunned the sports world when he left the New England Patriots and signed with Tampa Bay. He shocked everyone further when he led the Bucs to their first Lombardi Trophy in almost 20 years in just his first season with his new team.

As a second-year player, Devin White had a front row seat to Tom Brady’s greatness. The man defied age and his critics to earn his seventh Super Bowl ring in Florida. Host Marty Smith made sure to ask White about playing with Brady. For one, he wanted to know what White has learned from his famous teammate.

“As a player, to don’t worry about accolades. [Instead] go chase the rings,” White said of Brady’s advice.

Smith then followed that up by asking what White has learned from No. 12 as a man. Brady makes sure to balance his work-home life. Although winning consumes him and he’s one of the fiercest competitors around, he doesn’t neglect his family. That’s something that made an impression on the linebacker since they’ve been teammates.

“As a man, he always talks about just family,” White shared. “You know how much he plays the game, but how much he still put his family [first] and how family is important to him. You know because a lot of people can get caught up in being an NFL player and they still forget you’re still a human being when you leave out these [stadium] doors.”

Devin White talks about that and much more on the newest episode of The Marty Smith Podcast. Make sure to check out his entire interview in the link below, or listen to his full conversation on Spotify, Apple, or wherever else you listen to your favorite podcasts.