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Gaulden played multiple positions at Tennessee, and some scouts feel he will project better as a safety in the NFL. That versatility will make him a good value pick in the middle of the draft. Gaulden made 65 tackles in 2017, forcing three fumbles and recovering three. He also broke up five passes and recorded an interception while serving as an anchor for a defense riddled by injuries.
Gaulden was a bit more productive as a junior, notching 68 tackles, including six for loss, four passes defended and a forced fumble. Gaulden plays with passion and is a popular teammate.
Gaulden could evolve into one of the coveted safety/cornerback hybrid defensive players with a skill set teams can only dream up. He's sudden enough to be a cornerback and was one of the best blitzers on the roster in 2017, not to mention his natural playmaking skills.
Gaulden's passion sometimes boils into a flammable situation and teams will need to bridle his temper. Following the Volunteers' only touchdown in a blowout loss last year at Alabama, Gaulden celebrated by thrusting both middle fingers in the air toward the Crimson Tide crowd, earning him considerable scorn on social media.
An NFL team will be more than eager to shunt that into the background while focusing on his considerable strengths. Gaulden is a willing hitter and can play multiple positions, as well as on special teams. Some scouts compare him to Steelers safety Morgan Burnett, and there's no reason Gaulden can't enjoy a long career in Burnett's mold.
--Field Level Media