Past Experience — All of Tartacoff's experience comes as a wide receiver, where he played during his first two years with the program. Hand injuries kept him off the field after a torrid start as a true freshman during training camp.
With just one catch for 21 yards in his career, Tartacoff's biggest contribution has been on special teams, where he works as a holder and on kickoff coverage.
As a Recruit — Tartacoff was the second verbal commitment in the Class of 2010. As a two-star product out of Montgomery (N.J.), Tartacoff's only offer was from Rutgers at the time of his commitment.
Spring Performance — Head coach Kyle Flood moved Tartacoff to safety in search of a better position for his skill set. The junior quickly worked his way into the two-deep and performed solidly in coverage situations at his new position behind incumbents Lorenzo Waters, Wayne Warren and Duron Harmon.
Does Well — Tartacoff brings a certain level of natural coverage skills to the position after playing it in high school. With a strong knowledge of both side of the ball, Tartacoff has the ability to get himself in the position to make plays.
He may not have all the size of a Division I safety, but brings the athleticism needed for his current role.
Needs to Improve — Tartacoff is a long way from being ready to start a game as a defensive back and does not have a lot of time to get himself ready.
A converted receiver, Tartacoff lacks the coverage experience and technique needed to play safety in a Rutgers system and will have to continue to pick things up quickly in training camp.
Safety will not be a deep position for the Scarlet Knights this season, so Tartacoff will need to be ready to go.
Long-Term Outlook — Tartacoff's role on defense remains a question with plenty of players ahead of him and talented young DBs joining the program. But his special teams role continues to be invaluable to Rutgers. Mix that with a solid veteran presence and great attitude and Tartacoff can continue to be a key member of the team after his position change.