PHILADELPHIA — Oh yes, Tre'Davious White admits, he began to get nervous.
The NFL commissioner kept calling the picks, one after the other, 26 of them without hearing his name. Cornerbacks were flying off the board — one, then a second, a third and a fourth. His LSU teammates, Leonard Fournette and Jamal Adams, were gone, already selected hours earlier.
And there was White, backstage still waiting to hear his name.
"Most definitely," he said when asked if he grew nervous, "but never at one time did I waiver or doubt my ability or doubt my chances of going. I just knew God wasn’t going to place me in the wrong place. He placed me where he wants me to be, and that’s in Buffalo."
The Bills plucked White with the 27th pick of the first round, taking the Tigers' four-year starting, All-American cornerback with five picks left in Thursday's first round.
White became the third former LSU player selected in the NFL draft, joining running back Leonard Fournette (fourth pick to the Jaguars) and safety Jamal Adams (sixth pick to the Jets) for the second-most former LSU stars picked in the opening round of the draft. The 2007 draft produced four LSU first-rounders.
PHILADELPHIA — Tre'Davious White looked at the reporter as if he were crazy.
It's just the seventh year that multiple LSU players were chosen in the first round. Fournette, Adams and White tie the 1951 draft class with three first-rounders.
"Shows the amount of talent we have down in Louisiana and how good of coaches we have," White said. "They mold us into who were are."
Predictions for White, a Shreveport native, wandered from early second round to late first round. He appeared at the draft anyway on Thursday, a risk some might say, but he was rewarded around 10:15 p.m. CT — three hours into the event.
"It’s just been a surreal moment these last 30 minutes," White said. "I’m going to soak it all in and get up to Buffalo (Friday) and meet my coaching staff, and then once I get back to Baton Rouge, I’ve got a lot of things to think about, a lot of things to do."
One of them will likely be buying his mother a new home. White is from the Cooper Road neighborhood, a poverty-stricken area in north Shreveport. He didn't have a bed as a high schooler, having to share a mattress with his older brother.
His slotted signing bonus is expected to be more than $5 million.
"I plan on doing things for my mom," he said.
PHILADELPHIA — The paths for Leonard Fournette and Jamal Adams followed similar trajectories.
White strutted down the red carpet hours before the draft, showing off a gray suit with black-and-white tie and white shirt underneath. It was a simple, classic look — one that some might say matches his football personality.
He's not the flashy type like Adams, but White started 47 of 49 possible games at LSU.
He returned to school for his senior season, developing better versatility to guarantee himself a first-round selection. It worked but not until late. Four cornerbacks were selected before White realized his dream, and Adams returned to the green room to be with White, both intently watching the final few picks.
Two of the 22 players who attended the draft were not drafted, left in the green room back stage, cameras broadcasting their disappointment: Alabama offensive tackle Cam Robinson and Notre Dame quarterback DeShone Kizer.
White, meanwhile, got to make that long-awaited walk up to the stage of a massive outdoor theater set on Philadelphia's famed Rocky steps. He posed there with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, holding the jersey of his new team.
"It was a lifelong dream of mine," White said. "Just to know that I finally did it is a great thing."