Jordan Yates’ resolve showing results in spring practice

Georgia Tech quarterback Jordan Yates at spring practice March 30, 2021. (Danny Karnik/Georgia Tech Athletics)
Georgia Tech quarterback Jordan Yates at spring practice March 30, 2021. (Danny Karnik/Georgia Tech Athletics)

Credit: Danny Karnik

Credit: Danny Karnik

The position group that Georgia Tech quarterback Jordan Yates belongs to is absent two former teammates, Tucker Gleason and James Graham. Both transferred following last season, Gleason to Toledo and Graham to Georgia Southern.

Such decisions have become a familiar part of the college football landscape, and understandably so. But, while Jeff Sims will be difficult to dislodge as the starter, Yates is resolute to keep improving in a Yellow Jackets uniform.

“I think it just comes with, when you’re not playing well, you’ve got to look in the mirror, really, and see what you’re not doing well, and you’ve just got to work to improve that,” Yates said. “So I’ve been looking at what my flaws are, what I need to get better at, and I’ve just been really working on that all offseason, and I’m going to continue working on those things.”

Yates played a handful of snaps in the 2020 season as a redshirt freshman, appearing in three games and completing 4 of 9 passes for 16 yards. His plan for improvement this spring: “I think just being better from the pocket, being more consistent. And just quicker with my decision making.”

1. ‘Off the chain’ at practice

Offensive coordinator Dave Patenaude was highly complimentary of Yates’ work in Thursday’s practice, the second of the spring.

“Jordan Yates played off the chain (Thursday),” Patenaude said. “He was stepping up, making plays, dropping the ball in. Threw a couple balls to Kyric McGowan, our new wideout transfer. Really, really good.”

Yates attributed it to the accumulation of practice time since his arrival in the summer of 2019.

“It’s just really the repetition; it really slows down,” he said.

2. Dispensing wisdom

Yates is sharing that knowledge with two teammates he’s competing with behind Sims – Demetrius Knight, who has moved from linebacker to the position he played in high school, and early-enrollee freshman Chayden Peery.

“I’ve played in the offense longer, so I kind of know different ins and outs of it that I can help them with,” Yates said. “So really just trying to be a leader to those guys as they come along.”

3. Impressions of McGowan

Yates said that McGowan, a grad transfer from Northwestern, has made his presence felt in the leadership he has imparted.

“He works really hard, and he’s smart, and he’s really just a playmaker,” Yates said. “That’s just the best way I could put it.”

4. Getting in the podcast game

Yates and tight end Dylan Leonard, teammates at Milton High and close friends, are experimenting with hosting a podcast, which they’re calling “Penthouse Podcast.” The first edition, for which the guest was former Tech tight end Tyler Davis (now with the Jacksonville Jaguars), was released Monday.

Yates, who listens to the “I Am Athlete” podcast hosted by former NFL stars Chad Johnson and Brandon Marshall, said they decided to give it a try last week.

“It was pretty fun, so we’ll probably keep going with it,” Yates said. “But as far as where I see it going, I have no idea. We’re just going to keep doing it and see what happens.”

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