Positive: Adequately sized linebacker who makes plays in every direction of the field. Breaks down well, effectively uses his hands to protect himself, and quickly locates the ball. Gets depth on pass drops, fluid moving in every direction of the field, and makes plays in space. Displays force off the edge as a pass rusher and is rarely off his feet.
Negative: Struggles getting off blocks once engaged at the point of attack. Marginal production making plays in reverse.
Analysis: Tarver has the skill set to be a weak side linebacker in the NFL and produce on special teams."
As a true freshman at Tennessee State in 2007, he played in five games on special teams and as a reserve linebacker. He notched six tackles on the year, and added a sack.
In 2008, he started four of the seven games he played in and tallied 18 total tackles.
In 2009, he started 4-of-11 games played and finished with 29 tackles (20 solo, 9 assists). He also added a TFL, 2 picks and two PBUs.
In 2010, he started every game and tallied 62 total tackles, 7.5 TFLs, 3.5 sacks, a PBU, a PD and 2 hurries.
Strengths: Late bloomer with very nice size and decent athleticism for the SAM position. Made this last year his best by far. Has some tools in his toolkit. Was used all over the field by TSU--sometimes lined up crowding the line as a 4-3 OLB, other times standing up as a 4-3 DE and rushing the passer. Can drop pretty smoothly into coverage and has decent feet. Solid physique and works to get better. Can cover TEs on crossing patterns. Versatility and size give him a shot.
Weaknesses: Still not always confident as to what to do and where to be. Hasn't been given the chance to settle into a predictable role and still plays tentatively as a result. Is not the most instinctive guy around, and plays with very light feet, as though he is not always sure where to go. Not that explosive off the ball as a pass rusher, and lacks variety and timing to his pass rush moves. Hand fights too much with the OT. 2nd man in way too often on too many plays.
Projection: Totally below-the-radar prospect who can be stolen in the late rounds. Will need some development time and a staff ready to assign him a steady role so he can just lay his ears back and get to work. 7th rounder or priority UDFA."