T.J. Yates enjoying opportunity

Houston Texans quarterback T.J. Yates (13) scrambles for the first down against the Cincinnati...

Houston Texans quarterback T.J. Yates (13) scrambles for the first down against the Cincinnati Bengals during the first half of play in their NFL football game Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati, Ohio, December 11, 2011. (REUTERS/John Sommers II)

Mike Zeisberger, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:40 PM ET

KATY, TEX - Andy Dalton earned his starting job in training camp.

T.J. Yates earned his starting job by default.

While Cincinnati targeted Dalton early in the second round of the 2011 NFL draft, Yates, a fifth-rounder out of North Carolina, was listed behind Matt Schaub and Matt Leinart on the Houston Texans’ depth chart.

Of course, when those other two were sidelined by season-ending injuries, Yates stepped in and learned on the job, a process which included a come-from-behind 20-19 victory over Dalton’s Bengals on Dec. 11 which clinched the Texans’ first-ever division title.

”My situation is obviously a lot different than Andy’s,” Yates said. “He was drafted there to be the starter (while) unfortunate circumstances here in Houston led to me being the one playing.

“But you’ve just got to take advantage of every opportunity you get. It’s pretty cool to be a part of it.”


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