North Carolina

T.J. Yates optimistic about his NFL future

Posted April 19, 2011

It was a pretty well known fact that North Carolina's 2010 team was going to be loaded  with NFL talent.

But there was a time when not many would have agreed that quarterback T.J. Yates belonged on that list with some of his other teammates.

That was then.

That was before he efficiently and effectively led his team to eight wins and a bowl victory in his senior season after the team was ripped apart by NCAA investigations. That was before he impressed NFL scouts at his Pro Day workout in Chapel Hill. That was before word starting getting around about his ability, intelligence and intangibles.

This is now.

"It's a good chance and I'm pretty optimistic about the whole thing," Yates told Adam and Joe on The Fan Monday. "There's a lot of guys in my position (UNC teammates), we're trying to stay in shape, stay sharp because we've had a lot of workouts and visits. It's a different experience."

Certain publications like ESPN now have him ranked as the No. 10 quarterback prospect in the 2011 draft class. Some are projecting Yates has vaulted from a late round pick at best to a possible mid-round pick. And veteran quarterbacks coach Larry Kennan raves about him.

Yates has been doing his best to avoid what's being said about him in the press, even the good stuff. But in a way he's already prepared for criticism at the next level because he already saw plenty of it in college.

"Absolutely. Especially during my junior year if you start believing everything people say about you, that's not a good thing for your performance. You gotta keep your head out of that and turn all the nay sayers around."

But all the criticism and low expectations for the offense going into Yates' senior year allowed that unit to step up and surprise some people.

"Going into the season I was in a good position, to a certain extent I couldn't make anyone more pissed off at me," Yates chuckled. "But it was kind of a blessing in disguise, obviously it was a terrible thing what happened to the program. As far as myself and a lot of the guys on offense and our offense moving forward it opened up the door for us to be able to grow."

Time will tell if the NFL will be the next place for T.J. Yates to grow his game. He's drawing inspiration from the ESPN special, "The Brady 6", which highlighted the six quarterbacks selected ahead of the Patriots star in the 2000 NFL draft.

T.J. Yates, Tom never know.

"I'm not saying that," Yates said. "But I might be in the same situation as him how about that?"


Please with your account to comment on this story. You also will need a Facebook account to comment.

Oldest First
View all
  • jmoore27540 Apr 22, 2011

    View quoted thread


  • shakennotstirred Apr 19, 2011

    "after the team was ripped apart by NCAA investigations"

    buzzzzz, wrong. Ripped apart by a corrupt coaching staff (a fact), and by greedy, self-absorbed thuugs (a fact). Please report the facts Tim, you UNC blowhard. Yates deserves a chance, because he earned it. If he can help that messed up program at UNC get 8 wins with those fickle fans, he might just get a few snaps in preseason games. Congratulations to him for escaping, er, graduating UNC without getting caught up in the BD fiasco...

  • 1993 Tarheel Apr 19, 2011

    View quoted thread

    Nice debate. Typical careful on that ride home from the restaurant....

  • davidgnews Apr 19, 2011

    I don't think so but good luck to him.

  • pskunk119 Apr 19, 2011

    He'll be the most celebrated back-up QB in UNC history.

  • oneuncfan Apr 19, 2011

    View quoted thread

    Thats funny you mention that because seeing how the minimum NFL salary is about $350,000 id much rather sit on my tail with a a clipboard getting paid to watch NFL games from the sideline..Sounds alot better to me than 9-5 M-F.

  • jrj6950 Apr 19, 2011

    View quoted thread

    Right back at ya.

  • 1993 Tarheel Apr 19, 2011

    View quoted thread

    I find it hilarious too....must be a slow day at "work" for you df's.

  • braves309 Apr 19, 2011

    View quoted thread

    I bet you dream the same too dude!

  • GhostofSmitty Apr 19, 2011

    View quoted thread

    And he will be paid very well for holding that clipboard. If you watch the sidelines, the QB running the scout team and also helping to signal/call in the plays has a critical job. TJ will hopefully get to play a little, collect a nice check, bank it, learn alot, and move on to coaching in 8-12 yrs. No matter what, if he is near as good at read and recognition as Brees, or only 2/3 as good, he will find some playing time.




  • Golf: U.S. Senior Open

    Saturday at 1:00 pm on FOX50

  • US Swimming National Championships

    Saturday at 1:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • Women’s PGA Championship

    Saturday at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • MLB: NY Yankees at Houston

    Saturday at 7:00 pm on FOX50

  • NASCAR: Coke Zero 400 at Daytona

    Saturday at 8:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • Golf: U.S. Senior Open

    Sunday at 1:00 pm on FOX50

  • US Swimming National Championships

    Sunday at 1:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • Women’s PGA Championship

    Sunday at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • MiLB: MiLB: Bulls at Indianapolis

    Tonight at 7:00 on Buzz Sports Radio

  • MLB: Washington at St. Louis

    Saturday at 7:00 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Minor League Baseball
International League
Louisville 9:05 PT10:05 MT11:05 CT12:05 ET5:05 GMT
Rochester 10:05 PT11:05 MT12:05 CT1:05 ET6:05 GMT
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 3:35 PT4:35 MT5:35 CT6:35 ET11:35 GMT
Gwinnett 4:05 PT5:05 MT6:05 CT7:05 ET12:05 GMT
Pawtucket 4:05 PT5:05 MT6:05 CT7:05 ET12:05 GMT
Lehigh Valley 
Durham 4:05 PT5:05 MT6:05 CT7:05 ET12:05 GMT
Columbus 4:05 PT5:05 MT6:05 CT7:05 ET12:05 GMT
Travelers Champ (PGA)
1J. Spieth - z-12F
2D. Berger - y-12F
3tC. Hoffman-10F
3tD. Lee-10F
5tP. Reed-9F
5tP. Casey-9F
5tB. Weekley-9F
8tK. Streelman-8F
8tT. Merritt-8F
8tW. Simpson-8F
View Full Leaderboard
z = Won in Playoff   y = Lost in Playoff
NW Ark Champ (LPGA)
1S. Ryu-18F
2tA. Yang-16F
2tM. Jutanugarn-16F
4tM. Wie-13F
4tS. Lewis-13F
6tM. Lee-12F
6tI. Park-12F
8tN. Broch Larsen-11F
8tM. Alex-11F
10tM. Harigae-10F
View Full Leaderboard
Open de France (EURO)
1A. Bjork-513
2N. Kimsey-410
3tK. Broberg-317
3tT. Fleetwood-316
3tA. Levy-316
3tC. Sordet-310
7tM. Siem-217
7tM. Kaymer-215
7tG. McDowell-215
7tG. Bourdy-213
View Full Leaderboard
ATP Scoreboard
Wednesday, Jun. 28
AEGON International (ATP/WTA)
Second Round
R. Haase4     
D. Medvedev3     
(4) S. Johnson6 2    
T. Fabbiano3 2    
(3) J. Isner1     
D. Lajovic2     
(2) G. Monfils6 2    
C. Norrie3 1    
(7) R. Gasquet 
K. Anderson 
(6) M. Zverev 
B. Tomic 
Antalya Open (ATP)
Second Round
(2) P. Lorenzi3 4    
R. Albot6 6    
J. Tipsarevic6 4 4   
A. Seppi3 6 6   
D. Altmaier6 3 77   
M. Ilhan3 6 65   
(4) D. Ferrer3 6 62   
Y. Sugita6 3 77   
WTA Scoreboard
Wednesday, Jun. 28
AEGON International (ATP/WTA)
Third Round
(2) S. Halep66 1    
T. Pironkova78 2    
(7) S. Kuznetsova 
(9) K. Mladenovic 
(14) A. Pavlyuchen 
H. Watson 
(1) A. Kerber 
L. Arruabarre 
(6) C. Wozniacki 
(12) E. Vesnina 
(5) J. Konta 
(10) J. Ostapenko 
(3) K. Pliskova 
S. Peng