Los Angeles native Eric Yarber joins the Rams as wide receivers coach, after spending five season with the UCLA Bruins in the same capacity. Previously, he held NFL coaching positions with Seattle, San Francisco and Tampa Bay.
Yarber joined the Bruins staff as receivers coach in Jan. of 2012. During his five season tenure, seven of Yarber’s wide receivers were selected in the NFL Draft, including three of his Bruin receivers in the 2016 NFL Draft.
The Bruins pass offense ranked 18th in the nation (295.6 yards per game) in 2016. The season saw the emergence of receivers Darren Andrews, Jordan Lasley and Kenneth Walker. Andrews ranked 10th in the Pac-12 in receptions per game and led the team with 55 catches. Lasley came on strong over the course of the season and recorded 41 receptions while leading the team with six touchdowns. Walker caught 22 balls and scored four times.
Jordan Payton, chosen by Cleveland in the 2016 NFL Draft, became UCLA’s all-time receptions leader during the 2015 campaign and became the first Bruin to ever catch 200 career passes. He also moved up to third on the all-time receiving yards list and ranked among the nation’s top 25 in receiving yards (1,106) and receiving yards per game (85.1). Thomas Duarte, a Miami Dolphin draft selection, earned second-team all-conference honors after registering 10 touchdown catches which ranks fourth on the all-time school single-season list and was 17th in the NCAA. Devin Fuller, drafted by the Atlanta Falcons, moved up to the top six in career receptions.
In year two at UCLA, Yarber helped senior Shaq Evans, a fourth-round selection in the 2014 NFL Draft, finish up his career ranked tied for 10th on the school’s all-time reception list. Evans earned an invite to the Senior Bowl and the NFL combine after catching nine scoring passes in 2013, tied for ninth on the all-time school list.
In 2011, Yarber worked as Tampa Bay’s wide receivers coach for a promising young unit that included the development of second-round pick Arrelious Benn and fourth-round pick Mike Williams. Williams turned in one of the top seasons by a receiver in Buccaneers history, recording 65 receptions for 964 yards and 11 touchdowns. He led all rookie receivers in each of these categories, earning The Sporting News and PFW/PFWA All-Rookie Team selection while finishing second in voting for the Associated Press Offensive Rookie of the Year Award. Yarber also oversaw the emergence of Benn, who was becoming an important part of the Tampa Bay offense prior to a season-ending knee injury in Week 13.
Yarber came to Tampa Bay after spending three seasons (2007-09) on the collegiate level as the wide receivers coach at Arizona State. While at ASU in 2009, Yarber coached two standout wide receivers in Kyle Williams and Chris McGaha. Williams finished the 2009 campaign with 815 receiving yards on 57 catches and eight scores before being a sixth-round draft pick of the San Francisco 49ers in the 2010 NFL Draft. McGaha racked up 56 catches for 673 yards and four touchdowns on his way to second-team All-Pac 10 honors.
Prior to his work with the Sun Devils, Yarber coached wide receivers for two seasons (2005-06) under Tyrone Willingham at the University of Washington. With Yarber’s assistance, two receivers, Sonny Shackleford and Anthony Russo, turned in strong performances, with Russo finishing third in the Pacific-10 Conference with a 17.3 yards-per-catch average and Shackleford finishing fourth in touchdown catches (seven) and eighth in receptions (50) and receiving yards (666).
During the 2003-04 seasons, Yarber coached the San Francisco 49ers’ wide receivers, and in his first year guided Pro Bowler Terrell Owens to a 1,000-yard season. During this time, Yarber was also instrumental in the development of wide receivers Cedrick Wilson and Brandon Lloyd, as the duo ranked first and second among 49ers’ receivers in yards after the catch with a 13.6 and 13.1 average (min. 10 receptions) respectively in 2004.
From 1999-2002, Yarber coached at Oregon State, where he worked with running backs for one season (1999) before switching to wide receivers (2000-2002). His work with receivers Chad Johnson and T.J. Houshmandzadeh led to the two being selected in the second and seventh rounds, respectively, by the Cincinnati Bengals in the 2001 NFL Draft.
Yarber coached his first year in the NFL in 1998, working as an offensive quality control coach with the Seattle Seahawks, after spending the 1997 season coaching receivers at UNLV. His coaching career began in 1996 when he took a secondary coaching position at his alma mater, Idaho.
Yarber was selected by the Washington Redskins as a 12th-round pick in the 1986 NFL Draft and spent three seasons as a wide receiver and punt returner. He was part of the Washington squad that defeated the Denver Broncos to win Super Bowl XXII in 1988, leading that team with 37 punt returns. At Idaho, Yarber was a Kodak All-American and the Big Sky Conference’s Most Valuable Player during his senior year, catching 75 passes for 1,103 yards. As a junior, he finished 10th in the nation in punt returns and third in the conference with 817 receiving yards on 54 catches. He attended Crenshaw High School in Los Angeles.
Yarber earned a Bachelor’s in General Studies from the University of Idaho in 1995. He is married to Estevanica, and they have one son, Kameryon.
Yarber’s Coaching History
1996 – Idaho (Secondary)
1997 – UNLV (Wide Receivers)
1998 – Seattle Seahawks (Offensive Quality Control)
1999 – Oregon State (Running Backs)
2000-02 – Oregon State (Wide Receivers)
2003-04 – San Francisco 49ers (Wide Receivers)
2005-06 – University of Washington (Wide Receivers)
2007-09 – Arizona State (Wide Receivers)
2011 – Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Wide Receivers)
2012-16 – UCLA (Wide Receivers)
2017 – Los Angeles Rams (Wide Receivers)