On Tuesday, Billings activated Pro Bowl cornerback Tre’Davious White from the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list. White, who has been sidelined since his last Thanksgiving tear against New Orleans, has been training with the team for the past few weeks, but will now be eligible for Sunday’s game at the Jets.
As the Bills and their fans anxiously await the return of their corner to the field, White himself tries to make it back day by day.
“I felt so happy to be there with my teammates,” he said after training on Wednesday. “It has been a blessing. It has been a long way to go. It is just a blessing to be out there moving.”
Technical Director Sean McDermott rated White a daily but wouldn’t rule out seeing the corner kick against the Jets on Sunday. But, for now, the bills and their backstory are taking a long-term approach to his recovery.
“I had to basically build my body from the ground up,” White said. “It was a challenge and something as a footballer and as a man I’ve been to where I’ve been in my career, it was a different challenge. It’s something I wake up to every day ready to kick the butt… So, when I’m back and doing really well, it won’t come as a surprise to me. …the people I care about and who care about me know how much work and they know the effort, blood, sweat, and tears I put into this rehab.”
However, White has been open about how difficult the rehab process has been for him, not just physically but mentally.
“I think any time you get an injury, it’s mental,” he admitted. Locked up in my basement. The guys from the facility had to come get me out of there. The first few weeks, they were tough.”
For Wyatt, being injured for a long time felt like it He was forced to live a different life for some time.
“It was the first time I’ve been through anything like this. Since I was six or seven, it’s been soccer, basketball and track for the past 20 years. It’s the first time I’ve had to sit down. It gave me a different perspective. I have More than just a down pass or interception. It’s the first time in my life that I’ve sat down as Tre’Davious White.”
This led White to ask himself questions about what he could bring besides his talents on the field.
“What more can I offer people? I started reading, getting into a different space. Learning about myself. What is my goal on earth other than playing a football match? I have more to offer to people than football.”
Although recovery time wasn’t always easy, it allowed White to spend more time with his family and loved ones, something he clung to.
“I was able to take my son to school, do things I wouldn’t be able to do if I was playing football in a normal way,” he said. “I’ve been able to spend time with my little men, my two little boys…My kids are the number one thing to me. It was hard for them to see me downstairs. But they managed to get past it. Every day, I see them, good day or bad day, I walk through that door I’m still my dad, and they’ll still love me.”
Even now that he’s one step closer to his comeback, White is still keeping his recovery on track: “It was a tough time, but with the support of my teammates and medical staff, I’ve been getting through it… It’s been a process of getting to where I am now. I have ways to go, but I am looking forward to it.”
Perhaps the next step toward a full recovery will come on Sunday if he is able to advance to the MetLife arena against the Jets.
“It’s going to be great. I’m sure my teammates will be happier than me. I haven’t played a game since November 26 or November 24 (it was November 25). It’s been a long time. It’s going to be fun. I’m looking forward to it.”