Former high school and college sprinter. Saw action in 12 games as a true
freshman in 1998, with most of his action coming on special teams. Backup
cornerback in all 12 games in '99, when he had 16 stops and three passes
defensed before injuring his shoulder in the Fiesta Bowl. Missed spring
2000 while rehabbing his shoulder but came back to start every game at
right cornerback in the fall. Ended up with 35-8 and his first interception.
Split time and started six games in '01, recording 29-6.
Negatives: Lacks size and
strength and can be muscled. Is not physical enough to be much of a factor
vs. the run or on special teams, and bigger receivers can push him around.
Struggles to locate the ball when in coverage and is late reacting at times.
Just average ball skills.
Summary: Speed and movement
skills give him a chance as a fourth corner since he can run with most
receivers and flip his hips. However, he will have to get bigger and stronger
and improve his tackling and hitting so he can help more on special teams.
Two-year starter primarily a special
teams player early in his career. Totaled 29/0/7 his senior season after
36/0/9 the prior year.
Smallish cover-man best as a backup.
Fast, works hard and displays good ball awareness. Cannot stay with opponents
out of their routes, lacks the quick plant and break on the ball and easily
gives up positioning when battling to defend the pass. Gives an effort
in run defense but rather easily blocked out of the play or has his tackles
broken. Free Agent.
During Teddy Gaines' career at Tennessee,
he played well at cornerback, but unfortunately did not mature into the
complete player some had hoped he would. Seeing action mainly on special
teams and as a backup DB the first two seasons, the 6-1, 175-pound performer
started every game in 2000, when he collected 30 tackles and finished second
on the squad with eight pass breakups. Anticipating a powerful final season,
Gaines started six of the Vols' 12 games, but did not become the impact
player that he showcased during his junior year. While he has excellent
height for a corner, he lacks bulk and is not physical with receivers.
He needs more development in his technique and some added pounds without
losing quickness to get a shot in the pros.