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Player Profile #3: DeAndre Yedlin

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What's it take to be a rookie, Home Grown All-Star? Dynamic play and a demeanor capable of wooing crowds. Yedlin had both before he turned 21.

He burst onto the scene with some hair. That's not why we remember him.
He burst onto the scene with some hair. That's not why we remember him.
USA TODAY Sports

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Not many players had the impact on Seattle Sounders FC's season like DeAndre Yedlin. He changed how the team played through his flighty runs up the right side, his ability to track back and his flair for doing something dramatic. As the first ever Home Grown Player he does not set a bar for other HGPs, nor is he a measuring stick. Yedlin's 2013 deserves to be set aside as something rare and special. He was the third most valuable player in the community rankings. Only a tiny bit of that is due to Seattle Love.

#3 DeAndre Yedlin
Nat'l Affil USA Age 20
Years Pro 1 Years Sounder 1
Pos/Role Right-back
MLS (+Playoff) Stats CCL/USOC Stats Reserve Stats
Apps 33 4 0
Starts 32 3 0
Mins 2845 279 0
G 2 1 0
A 3 0 0
PP/90 0.22 0.65 --
Advanced Stats
Off Pass % Net Shot Rate Net Duel Rate
Total 62% -0.19 0.66
Team Rank 9th 9th 9th

#3 DeAndre Yedlin

During the Sounders Academy's first ever season the signs were clear that young DeAndre was something different. On-ball skills like a midfielder, speed like a track star and the ability to read the game at an advanced meant that he would be a pro - some day. That day came after only three semesters in college. His advanced stats are all in the top 10 in his first season and should get better in year two.

Offense: Strong short passer that uses his speed and interplay to either break himself free or drag defenders with him and free the right mid. Good dribbler that is selective when using that skill to gain space. Improving cross through the season, but still needs work to be great. When he drives from the elbow can pop a long distance shot. Has the attacking game of a decent to good wide midfielder.

Defense: Can be aggressive in one-on-one play. Opposition has to quickly take advantage as Yedlin's recovery speed is amazing. Could be considered positionaly unsound, or maybe he's just more forward than slow guys. Gets more interceptions per game than any other regular outside back in MLS (just two off highest quantity). Middle of the pack for right backs for tackles. In the upper third for MLS right back clearances per match. Third best pure right back for aerial duels won. Yes, seriously. The kid has hops.

His baseline defense is good. His peak though... I'm getting ahead of myself.

Physique: Slight frame with average strength. Good jumper but short. Great speed and he's not afraid to use it.

Best Case 2014: Currently getting a look from the senior US National Team after appearing with the U20s just this year. In a Best Case he makes it to Brazil representing the United States and is a Best XI player. Yes, this is extreme, but he's already one of the best right backs and small improvements to his all around game get him to Brazil.

Magic from distance

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Magic with his head

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Magic in the box

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