If you ask around about James White in Foxboro, you'd be hard-pressed to hear one negative thing said about the New England Patriots running back.
White has been the consummate pro since joining the Patriots in 2014, and his leadership was officially recognized in 2018 when he was named an offensive captain. It's clear the two-time Super Bowl champion has earned the respect of both his teammates and coaches, including offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels.
During his press conference Tuesday, McDaniels heaped praise onto White and paid him the ultimate compliment.
“I told my kids last week if they grew up to be like James White, then me and their mother would have done a good job, and I think that’s one of the best compliments we could say about him," McDaniels said.
“James is a special individual. He was that way when he got here. I think that’s a tribute to the way his parents raised him and the kind of human being he is and he’s developed into. He’s a very mature young man. He’s very unselfish. He’s always been one of the finest teammates that I will ever coach. He’s always prepared to do his job very well. He has the rare ability to listen to something in a meeting and then perform it exactly that way on the field. He’s been able to do that really his whole career here.”
White rejoined the Patriots for Monday night's game vs. the Kansas City Chiefs, two weeks after losing his father in a car accident. After the game, the 28-year-old expressed what his dad meant to him while explaining that he was still processing the tragedy.
The pain White is going through is unimaginable, but he'll have his teammates by his side to support him every step of the way. McDaniels made that clear while crediting White's parents for raising a son with incredible character.
“James doesn’t get yelled at on the practice field because James basically does his job the right way when he’s out there every snap,” McDaniels said. "It’s a tribute to the young man and the way that he was raised. It meant a lot to have him back here. I know there’s a lot of us that were hurting for him because in our profession we spend a lot of time together and we’re close to these guys. And we’ve got a pretty close-knit group here, coaches and players. Our whole organization is like that."
White had three carries for 21 yards and caught seven passes for 38 yards in Monday night's Patriots loss.