Join Date: Sep 2011
Re: TJ Yates
Here's another interesting TJ Yates article back in August. I have not seen this one posted.
Note the pinky things again. "Tea Time with TJ."
Texans put rookie QB on accelerated learning curve
Under the gun
With Matt Leinhart unable to practice, Texans have put rookie QB T.J. Yates on an accelerated learning curve
Published 05:30 a.m., Thursday, August 4, 2011
T.J.Yates dropped five steps into the pocket, scanning the field of receivers who cut across the hash marks. Seeing the separation between Terrence Toliver and his defender, Yates adjusted his shoulders and released a crisp pass toward the sideline.
The football, however, was underthrown, allowing cornerback Sherrick McManis to recover and make the interception.
On the next play, Yates fumbled a routine handoff to the running back. The rookie quarterback gathered himself and strung together a series of consecutive completions.
"T.J. has shown some very good signs of short-term memory out there," said quarterbacks coach Greg Knapp. "In this business, every quarterback is going to have some tough times, but you have to fight through them and bounce back, and he's done that so far."
Yates, 24, has been placed in a tough position in camp. There's no time for him to dwell on mistakes. He's too busy processing large volumes of information and taking two-thirds of the snaps thanks to NFL regulations preventing Matt Leinart from practicing until today.
The last three days have been mentally grueling for Yates, who just received the playbook last week. But he isn't complaining.
"I don't even know what day of the week it is," he said with a smile. "I've been extremely lucky to get this many reps as a rookie this early in camp, so I'm taking it one day at a time and working with Coach (Gary) Kubiak and Coach Knapp to get better. It's been awesome."
As expected, the NFL's learning curve — especially at quarterback — is steep for him. Reading the defense, understanding the progressions, improving footwork in the pocket and making smarter decisions with the football are all things Yates is learning daily.
"He's taking two steps forward and a step backward, which we expect because he's going to make mistakes," Knapp said. "But we're seeing good progress. T.J. is a smart kid that has managed a lot of information very well in a short amount of time."
Yates said familiarity has been instrumental in his improvement.
"Half of the verbiage within the offense is the same as North Carolina," he said of his alma mater. "There are a lot of the same concepts so being able to memorize them and the formations has def-initely made the transition a lot easier."
Kubiak praised Yates' growth following Tuesday's practice.
"If you want to pick out a guy that's made the most improvement from practice one to two, it was him," Kubiak said.
Watching starting quarterback Matt Schaub has been helpful.
"I'm learning the little things about how to work cadences and how he kind of approaches things in the huddle," Yates said. "You have to mimic his exact cadence, you have to say the exact same things that he says in the huddle so when you get in the huddle with his guys there's no dropoff."