Nov 22, 2015; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Texans quarterback T.J. Yates (6) rolls out during game against the New York Jets the at NRG Stadium. Houston won 24-17. Mandatory Credit: Ray Carlin-USA TODAY Sports
T.J. Yates, Quarterback
Ok, so maybe not the most exciting name on the list here, but quarterback T.J. Yates may be gone after this season is over. This shouldn’t be too hurtful for the team, especially when considering he wasn’t even on the roster until not too long ago.
The reason he’s not extremely likely to return is due to two factors. One being that Houston may finally draft a quarterback early next season after their experiment with Ryan Mallett went up in flames. A young prospect could either start and push current starter Brian Hoyer to the bench, or they could be thrown in the fire immediately, in which case Hoyer would be the backup.
2014 fourth-round pick Tom Savage would ideally fill the role of third string quarterback. That would make Yates fourth at best in that scenario.
If the team decides against drafting a quarterback Yates then finds himself battling Savage and perhaps Brandon Weeden (who is still currently under contract for 2016) for the backup and/or third string job behind Hoyer.
Yates played well enough in his brief stint that he most likely won’t want to battle for a roster spot, but instead may want to go somewhere he would be the clear-cut number two guy.
And that is the second factor in Yates most likely leaving next season, there simply is a shortage of quality NFL quarterbacks and teams will grab anyone who shows the slightest promise. Yates came in off the bench and made a clutch pass to receiver DeAndre Hopkins, which proved to be the game winner against the Cincinnati Bengals. He then started the next game against the New York Jets and threw for over 200 yards and led the team to another win.
While his stats don’t jump off the page, he did prove vital in two of the four games the Texans won during their season saving winning streak. After watching the Dallas Cowboys and Baltimore Ravens struggle so mightily without their star signal-caller, it wouldn’t be a shock to see someone snatch a guy up who proved he can step in and protect the ball while earning his team a win.
Next: A running back who didn't meet expectations