There are a lot of misguided fans out there that have been hollering in the last game against the Colts that T.J. Yates was only doing check downs, and did not play well. I would like to analyze this just a bit, without getting into fancy-smancy stats -just basic observations: (Catch them after the jump)
If Yates were only throwing check downs, then why is his yards per attempt (8.3) for that game exceeded by only 3 quarterbacks in the NFL (their average) that have attempted more than 10 passes this year. Those three quarterbacks are: Aaron Rodgers (9.2), Tom Brady (8.7), and Matt Schaub (8.5). Yes our very own 3rd string 5th round draft pick ™ had more yards per attempt than the likes of Drew Brees , Ben Rothlessberger, and Eli Manning. So how is having an over 80% completion rate and averaging more than 8 yards per attempt being captain check-down?
Was Yates play superb in the game against the Colts? No it was not. Was it better than Orlovsky's performance? Yes it was. All "just winz ™ " arguments do not count and should be automatically dismissed. Saying Orlovsky "won" that game is ridiculous if you watched the game. Even the "Game winning drive - he threw for only two 1st downs. That is right, only two. All other first downs (3) were by penalties. The 78 yard drive he was 4 of 8 for 57 yds 2 for first downs and one TD. What a shock huh?
Yates did get sacked 4 times - one was the rookie mistake fumble caused by Mathis (and Winston's piss poor pass blocking). The other three were on three step drops. So, either the receiver did not get open (and there is rarely time for more than 2 reads there) or what is more likely from what I saw is that the O-line was shoved back onto Yates. Would a healthy Schaub have avoided those? I don't know, but likely he would have avoided at least one, maybe two, but one of those I doubt it - it happened so fast I don't think anyone could have gotten out of there in time.
There were many issues in that game - some say the defense had to stay on the field too long. Well, they did - they did not stop the Colts on 3rd down too many times in the game. Yes, the offense was anemic, but not the fault of the young Yates. Fingers can be pointed at play-calling a bit, but abysmal offensive line play, combined with really good defensive line play by the Colts was the biggest culprit.
Poorly informed calling for Delhomme to play instead of Yates, need to check the facts.