Tavares Gooden

Tavares Gooden

refer to caption

Gooden with the Baltimore Ravens
No. --Free agent
Position: Linebacker
Personal information
Date of birth: (1984-10-07) October 7, 1984
Place of birth: Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Height: 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Weight: 242 lb (110 kg)
Career information
High school: Fort Lauderdale (FL) Aquinas
College: Miami (FL)
NFL Draft: 2008 / Round: 3 / Pick: 71
Career history
Career NFL statistics as of Week 9, 2013
Tackles: 91
Sacks: 0.0
Interceptions: 0
Player stats at NFL.com

Tavares Gooden (born October 7, 1984) is an American football linebacker who is currently a free agent of the National Football League. He was drafted by the Baltimore Ravens in the third round of the 2008 NFL Draft. He played college football at the University of Miami.

Early years

Gooden played high school football at St. Thomas Aquinas High School in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, where he was a three-sport star in football, track and basketball. He was a two-time Class 4A All-State selection. One of his teammates was Nate Salley. As a junior in 2001, he made 87 tackles, 12.5 sacks and three forced fumbles. In his senior year, he was a first-team All-Broward selection at defensive end.

Also a standout track & field athlete, Gooden was the 2002 state champion in the discus at 181 feet (and had a personal best of 197 feet). He had bests of 21 feet in the long jump and 6-8 in the high jump. Also a member of the 4x100 relay (42.10 s).


Regarded as a four-star recruit by Rivals.com, Gooden was listed as the No. 5 inside linebacker prospect of the class of 2003.[1] He chose Miami over Ohio State and LSU.

College career

In his true freshman season with the University of Miami, Gooden played in all 13 games, almost entirely on special teams, where he made 10 tackles (six solo). By his sophomore year he became starting weakside linebacker, but suffered a shoulder injury and did not start the final three regular-season games, though he did see action. For the season, Gooden totaled 83 tackles (third on the team), 10 tackles for loss, a half sack and three pass breakups. He started in the 2004 Peach Bowl and made six tackles (two solo), one tackle for loss and one pass breakup.

Starting his junior season at strongside linebacker, Gooden suffered a dislocated left shoulder in the first quarter of the season opener vs. Florida State, and missed the remainder of the year. He received a medical redshirt and underwent surgery on October 3, 2005.

In 2006, he returned as the Hurricanes' strongside linebacker, playing in 11 games and making four starts. He totalled 41 tackles (27 solo), adding five tackles for loss, three QB pressures and two pass breakups. Gooden also made a season-high nine tackles in the 2006 MPC Computers Bowl.

He was one of the students involved in the underground rap group 7th Floor Crew, which consisted of former and current University of Miami students who recorded a rap song that contained lewd sexual references. He went by the name "T-Good".[2]

Professional career

2008 NFL Draft

Although considered one of the better linebacker prospects in the 2008 NFL Draft, Gooden raised some concerns due to his history of injuries, including a dislocated left shoulder.[3] He was drafted by the Baltimore Ravens in the third round (71st overall) of the 2008 NFL Draft.

Pre-draft measurables
Ht Wt 40-yd dash 10-yd split 20-yd split 20-ss 3-cone Vert Broad BP
6 ft 1 14 in 234 lb 4.62 s 1.50 s 2.62 s X s X s 35 in 9 ft 10 in 22 reps
All values from NFL Combine.[4][5] Did not participate in shuttle/cone drill, because of hip injury.

Baltimore Ravens

Gooden had only five total tackles in four games of the 2008 season. Gooden started at inside linebacker alongside Ray Lewis for the 2009 season, but was oft-injured and only played 12 games while making 47 tackles. A backup again in 2010, Gooden recorded only 18 tackles, and was often hurt.

He was released on September 3, 2011.[6]

San Francisco 49ers

On September 4, Gooden signed with the San Francisco 49ers, playing primarily on special teams.[7]

Houston Texans

On October 28, 2013, Gooden signed with the Houston Texans as a free agent. He was released on November 8, 2013.[8]


  1. "Inside linebackers 2003", Rivals.com, February 5, 2003.
  2. "Tavares Gooden: The Next Great Ravens Linebacker", BaltimoreBeatdown.com, May 11, 2009.
  3. "Tavares Gooden Draft Profile", Sports Illustrated, retrieved May 14, 2010.
  4. "Tavares Gooden Combine Profile", NFL.com, retrieved May 14, 2010.
  5. "Tavares Gooden Draft Profile", NFLDraftScout.com, retrieved May 14, 2010.
  6. "Tavares Gooden cut as Ravens get to 53". ProFootballTalk.com.
  7. "Tavares Gooden lands with 49ers". ProFootballTalk.com.
  8. "Texans release Gooden, add Victorian to active roster". chron.com. Retrieved November 8, 2013.

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