Tre McBride’s NFL Draft diary: Slide disappoints, but he’s ready to prove himself

Tre McBride new featured image
 Tre McBride celebrates with well-wishers right after he talked to Titans execs and knew knew his dream to  play in the NFL had come true. (Photo courtesy Doug McBride Jr.)

Second in a series

When I worked out privately for teams before the NFL Draft, they told me they had me going in the third or fourth round. So that’s what I thought too, as I watched the draft from Day 1 through Day 3 at home in Williamsburg,Va.,with family and friends.

Tre McBride (salmon colored shirt) is surrounded by family and friends as he waits for the call.  (Photo courtesy Doug McBride Jr.)
Tre McBride (salmon colored shirt) is surrounded by family and friends as he waits for the call. (Photo courtesy Doug McBride Jr.)

It was torture, pretty much. I was pretty discouraged after the fourth round. After the fifth round passed, I thought, “OK, it’s not gonna go the way we thought.”

At a certain point, I stopped watching and just hung out with friends and waited for the phone call. In the seventh round, I received calls from 18 teams that told me I was their No. 1 priority free agent, so I was already in the mindset that I wasn’t gonna get drafted.

I was disappointed because I thought I was gonna be able to go a lot higher than I did, but eventually I was able to make peace with it.

I was outside my apartment when my phone rang with a Tennessee number. The first person I talked to from the Titans staff was their general manager, Ruston Webster. He said, “I know you’ve been waiting all day, but your wait is over.” Just like that, I was a Tennessee Titan. Seventh round draft pick, No. 245.

It was a surprise because I was already prepared to look at my priority free agent options. I was really shocked, but it was definitely the big highlight of the week because we’d waited so long for it to happen.

McBride call
Tre McBride gets the draft call from Titans general manager Ruston (Courtesy Doug McBride Jr.)

I have no clue why I slid that far, and I’m still struggling with it right now, trying to think of anything that could possibly have come up. The coaches I spoke to from teams that wanted me to be a priority free agent said they had no idea why I fell, and they didn’t expect me to fall out of the draft.

From conversations with those teams, it sounded like I was on their draft board as their third or fourth round guy, but they had to pass on me because of team needs. I just kept getting stuck in that predicament. The media speculates that my slide was due to an ankle issue. There’s no ankle issue. I had an ankle injury in August 2014, during our Virginia Tech game, but I didn’t miss any games, and I’ve been fine ever since.

If I had ankle issues I wouldn’t have been a combine top performer. Analysts just want to find something to talk about. As for the stuff out there about me being a diva, I don’t know where that came from. I had private workouts with teams and three official visits. No one questioned my character.

I feel like one of them would have brought it up if it was something they were worried about. No one did. It’s OK though. All I want is a chance to prove myself. I’m just glad the Titans took a chance on me.

Tre McBride

Tre McBride

Tre McBride’s NFL Draft diary is told to Stefanie Loh. McBride is a senior at William & Mary.