If you think Tom Brady has weapons, wait until you see what T.J. Braff had in high school. Braff was a backup quarterback called into action his junior year at Palo Alto High School in Palo Alto, California, in 2009. When you have Davante Adams of the Green Bay Packers and Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Joc Pederson as your wide receivers, the pressure for a high school backup quarterback is minimal at best.
Davante Adams a win away from a Super Bowl berth
Davante Adams has certainly made a claim to be considered the best wide receiver in the NFL. Adams has been dominant for the Green Bay Packers this season, finishing with a league-leading 18 touchdown receptions despite missing two-plus games. He also racked up 1,374 receiving yards.
Adams was a second-round pick of the Packers after a stellar college career at Fresno State. Adams played two seasons at Fresno State and had 1,000-plus receiving yards both years. After redshirting in his first year in 2011, he had 102 catches for 1,312 yards and 14 touchdown receptions. He followed that up by hauling in 24 touchdown catches. Adams had 131 catches for 1,719 yards in his sophomore year.
Adams gave up the final two years of his eligibility to enter the 2014 NFL draft. The Packers selected him in the second round with the 53rd overall pick. He’s made the Pro Bowl the last four seasons and has established himself as one of the league’s best in the business.
Joc Pederson just captured a World Series title
Joc Pederson is a free-agent outfielder who is coming off a World Series championship with the LA Dodgers. Pederson was a three-sport athlete at Palo Alto High School in Palo Alto, California. He played football, basketball, and baseball.
Pederson’s ticket to the next level was baseball. In his senior year of high school, Pederson hit .466 and was an outstanding centerfielder. He had committed to play college baseball at USC but was drafted by the Dodgers in the 11th round of the 2010 MLB draft and signed a pro deal.
Pederson made his Major League Baseball debut on Sept. 1, 2014. In his first full season in the big leagues in 2015, Pederson was an MLB All-Star. He smacked 26 home runs and drove in 54 runs despite hitting .210. He had his best season in 2019 when he hit a career-high 36 home runs and drove in 74 runs. Pederson also hit a career-high .249.
Adams and Pederson made things easy for quarterback T.J. Braff
The Palo Alto High School football team in California was stacked during the 2009 and 2010 seasons. In 2009, Davante Adams and Joc Pederson were the top two wideouts on the team. T.J. Braff was a junior quarterback who was filling in for an injured Christoph Bono. Braff, himself, was another talented athlete who went on to play Division 1 baseball at Santa Clara.
He said throwing the ball to those two top-notch athletes made his job very easy. “Joc made one of the craziest catches and it didn’t even count,” Braff told Sportscasting. “It was a dead ball, one of the linemen jumped offsides, and I threw it anyway. It was down the left side and he ran a quick out. I threw it behind him and he made a one-handed catch on the opponent’s sideline. That catch is still stuck in my head.
“Davante was a stud in high school but didn’t get quite the recognition you’d think. He really developed in college. He didn’t lift a whole lot in high school but he got much bigger and stronger at Fresno. We also had another receiver on that team who was a crazy athlete, too. His name was Maurice Williams. It was a lot of fun throwing to those guys. A lot of times, I’d just throw the ball up there.” Despite the talent, Palo Alto did not win the state championship in 2009. They won the state title in 2010, a year after Pederson graduated.