statue in terms of mobility. They can't fucking run but are nearly impossible to sack them because of their timing, pocket movement and ability to make good decisions.
and... i like them? I think I like them.
statue in terms of mobility. They can't fucking run but are nearly impossible to sack them because of their timing, pocket movement and ability to make good decisions.
I definitely hope we do. I've thought about this a lot. We don't have to have Denard but somebody even less to what Devin can do just opens up so much. Devin is a very exceptional scrambler and I think we've still only seen the tip of the ice berg. It's going to be a fun season. Go Blue!
If the coaches could have RGIII with the way he turned out, they probably take him over any QB. If it was between a Cam Newton and an Andrew Luck out of HS, they at least take a very close look at Newton, who meets the requirements as a passer but adds his legs. But if they have to choose out of HS between HS Gardner at QB and HS Henne at QB, they are taking Henne every time. That's because they believe Henne meets all the requirements of the position, has similar upside, and is more of a sure thing in their offense.
See above why that is a big mistake. Hypothetical Henne loses last week's ND game for us because unlike Gardner, he would have eaten multiple, net negative 20 yard sacks, killing multiple drives. Statues like Henne put too much pressure on a competent offensive line, which is extremely rare in college. This year for us its the interior, next year the exterior with Lewan and Schofield gone, and so on and so on...
Dual threat QBs offer teams a safety valve to manage the chaos that inevitably comes in college when assignments break down, when Funchess misses 10 blocks, when Kalis gets destroyed repeatedly.
Had Ohio State started a statue instead of Troy Smith against our Woodley/Branch defenses, Michigan wins those games handily and reaches the NC game.
In college, where play execution is magnitudes more subject to breakdown than in the pros: Dual Threat QB with passable throwing judgment >>>> Statue who can throw.
You're talking about where they ended up, not about recruiting them out of high school. I've discussed this above, and it's not a shot at Gardner or where he is now, but he was much more raw and would be a huge system in the system Michigan is running now because of that. Henne would provide similar upside (and they would have called a much different game with healthy 4th yearh Henne than they just did with DG to maximize his upside) and there would have been substantially less risk.
The point is, yes, if they can get what RGIII ended up becoming, they would take that everytime in the college game for the reasons you listed. But the risk in taking RGIII and having him become efficient in the system you want to run compared to taking an Andrew Luck is significant. The case is similar (albeit we probably aren't talking potential #1 overall draft picks here) with Henne and Gardner. They would be just as comfortable with Henne's upside with much less risk involved compared to Gardner. But if they knew Gardner was going to be what he is today, I'm certain they would put much more emphasis on recruiting Gardner than they would otherwise. As is, out of high school, with what we saw from the two, they recruit Henne every time, and it's reasonable and understandable to see why.
FWIW, in a perfect world I would take a mobile QB over someone with decent mobility like Henne if I was comfortable that they would become an RGIII or potentially a Gardner like player. I prefer QB mobility over not, because like you said, they can create more things when plays break down. But this isn't a perfect world and it doesn't necessarily work that way.
The place we differ is on the updside front. To me, statues have the limited upside in college when they face the SEC defenses (or ND's this year) that disrupt the O line, and get pressure, and get sacks.
If anything, the dual threat QBs are the ones with the clearly higher upside. John Manziel is exhibit A. You put any statue into last year's TAM/Bama game, and Bama wins.
Seriously look at us even. With Denard you were talking about exceptional mobility, but I'd put Denard near the lower quartile of dual threat QBs when it came to passing judgment and accuracy. And he still led us to 11-2 and a BCS (lucky) win.
Look at Braxton Miller. He has zero chance of every being a QB in the pros with how wretched his accuracy is, and yet he still manages to drop 50 on Wisconsin last year and now guides the favored team in the BiG.
I'll rephrase- in college, upside: Dual Threat QB >>> Statue
But is that potential relatively marginal additional upside worth taking the substantial risk over another guy (I personally think Gardner's upside is only marginally higher than Shane Morris's upside, for instance). According to the staff, it appears it is not for their system. Denard also got killed against teams like MSU, where a pure passer would have given Michigan a much better chance to win that game. It's different upside that provides different things for a team. Morris will be able to fit throws into windows that Gardner never will. Gardner can make many more plays with his legs. Different upsides, Gardner's is marginally higher, but again, in Michigan's system was a much higher risk of not working out.
The point is you need a true dual threat that can pass and run and is worth taking the risk, which is extremely rare and difficult to find. That's the point I'm trying to make. Obviously, all else equal, a mobile, dual threat is better than a statue (and I don't think the staff every wants purely a statue). But from a risk/reward standpoint in Michigan's system, a Shane Morris is a better recruit than a Devin Gardner coming out of High School. I'm not claiming that's right or wrong or somewhere in between (I think a lot of it depends on many other circumstances, such as depth at the position), but I'm saying it appears to be the staff's point of view. And it appears to be a similar point of view that the Alabama staff is starting to take.
As an aside about my posting, I think this is something I need to be more clear about. There have been numerous times on this board recently where what I say is being taken as what I believe is optimal. Examples include defend Borges (where I'm not saying he's a perfect or even great OC, I'm experessing his POV and what someone in his position would see), Fitz missing running lanes (again, in a perfect world Fitz would hit the open lane, but Fitz is reading his blocks or presuming pressure from a certain area, again it's going off what he sees not what I believe is best), and then this (I'm expressing where I think the staffs preference lies as far as risk/reward and style of player for their system, not what I would prefer in my style system). Just throwing that out there, and seeing as it's happening often on a board with many well-read readers, it's most likely something on my end that I need to be clearer about.
When mobile Denard played Alabama too, as well as dismantling a mobile QB in the National Championship game?
A&M didn't beat Bama because their QB was mobile; they beat them because their QB was really good.
Michigan doesn't need to recruit mobile quarterbacks; they need to recruit really good quarterbacks, whether they're mobile or not.
Agree with Magnus above. Start with the arm and feet. If that's there, the legs are a bonus.
assuming that elite passing and elite running are basically independent, then the probability of having both is the same as the probability of one times the probability of the other. That is, if there's a 1 in 100 chance of having an elite arm and a 1 in 100 chance of having elite legs, then the odds of having both are (1/100)*(1/100)= 1/10,000.People who turn out to be like Devin are very, very rare.
A Venn diagram is always helpful.
The overlap is much bigger than you think because arm strength and pure speed don't make a QB. It's a position where quick decision-making is the most important thing. There's certainly a baseline need for arm strenth and/or speed (depending on the offense), but decision-making is most critical. There are exceptions (Denard and Pat White) but you don't have to be an elite athlete in general. Gardner has neither elite speed (compared to WRs, RBs, etc) or elite arm strength - he has very good speed and very good arm strength, great leadership, and elite decison-making.
Said in another way - elite runners will generally not be QBs, they'll be CBs and WRs and RBs. Elite 'passers' will be... pitchers, probably. Elite decision-makers and leaders will be QBs.
"Elite Passer" and "Elite Runner" are not independent events, so multiplying the probabilities is invalid.
1) While we talk about "arm strength", throwing a football is a full-body activity. You have to be "athletic" to be a good thrower, so you'll probably also have above average leg strength.
2) The mental aspect is key - both the best passers and the best throwers will need excellent vision and quick decision making.
3) You also need to be a great student of the game to be an "elite" player at any position. Good football smarts can translate to multiple positions.
Anyway, what you really want to know is, "What is the probability that a QB is an elite runner, given that he is an elite passer?"
recruit dual threat QBs but I do not think we will.
First, thank you OP for posting this topic. If I had one topic to post for my entire MGoBlog "career", this would be it... (but I don't have the points yet).
We should absolutely be recruiting dual threat QBs. And let's get this terminology business out of the way up front. When I say dual threat I mean someone who can make the throws but also use his legs to run and thus force defenses to account for both forms of QB attack. If dual threat isn't the right name for this, then call it whatever you want.
I've read all the posts in this thread already, and I think some folks are missing the big picture when it comes to the dual threat point. First, yes, there are teams winning without dual threat QBs right now - Alabama of course. But the dual threat "trend" is only just begining. Watch in 10 or 20 years and I would put my fanhood on the line that the teams who accept this new trend will wind up winning far more often than the teams that dont. Just give it time for the statistics to settle out. (Ohio State jumped on the bandwagon relatively early and, as a result, is in a fantastic position going forward regarding this element.) In 20 years from how, I see it being a requirement to be a dual threat QB for the big time schools to even consider you. Those that don't adapt will be left behind. And don't misunderstand, it will still be possible to win national championships without them, but you're far more likely to win with a dual threat QB.
And it just irks me when folks say "Michigan won't need a dual threat QB once our great WR, OL, and RB recruiting takes hold". Well, sure we'll win... but wouldn't you want to win more??? Why win a national championship once every decade, say, when you could potentially win 2 or 3 a decade? And yes, I see a dual threat QB making that kind of difference! Even Alabama today I would argue would be even better with a dual threat QB instead of McCarron.
I've been wanting dual threat QBs at Michigan ever since I realized it is the wave of the future (which became apparent during the early 2000s when QBs were gashing Michigan defenses at will for what seemed like years). I'm so high and optimistic about the future of Michigan with the staff we have and the players we're recruiting. BUT... the only thing that makes me a little down is that folks like Morris and Speight, while great players, are lacking this dimension. I realize that true dual threats may be rare, but Michigan needs to expend maximum effort to get these players. It should be position priority number 1 going forward. If Michigan sees the light and recruits non-dual threat QBs only when dual threats are not available, they'll make a program leap from "great" to "dominate".
Devin Gardner was the #1 dual threat QB coming out of HS. He's a rare kind of player that Michigan won't get their hands on often. Not because they're Michigan.. but because players with Gardner's skill set are few and far between.
at (John Charles) Portland State, Boise State (Tony Hilde), UCLA (Cade McNown), Oregon (Tony Graziani), Indiana (Gibran Hamdan), and Auburn (Jason Campbell).
Historically speaking, his preference is to have a QB with some decent wheels on him, but in no way a Denard Robinson/Pat White kind of QB.
I do think that Devin Gardner may be one of the finest passers that Borges has coached in a long while.
How about we enjoy the next two years with DG? Yep, two years , I said it. Then we will have two solid years with Morris. After that, I'm sure there will be another outstanding QB recruit and hopefully they will be a 4.7 40 or better type guy.
Let's have this boil down to one simple question. Do we win Saturday with A.J. McCaron taking snaps or did we need Devin Gardner's legs (for both rushing and gaining time to make throws)?
If we had A.J. McCarron he'd be playing behind Johnny Manziel. Hoke said he'd be our backup, remember?
One game sample sizes while additionally using an extremely limited recruit sample size in the grand scheme of recruiting and how games and seasons for teams play out isn't really the best example. Just sayin'
One game sample sizes are too small I understand and the recruits/players listed above I don't really even care about. Throw Chad Henne is as the A.J McCarron equal and Terrelle Pryor instead of Devin Gardner. I'm just asking in games like Saturday night's, did we NEED the athleticism of Braxton or Terrelle or Vince Young to win that game when Notre Dame was more or less beating our O-line, as a whole, play after play. Devin ultimately made throws like a boss but his legs bought him some plays that I'm wondering if we didn't get would we have won.
Devin thus far has looked like a pocket passer at times, very accurate with great poise so he is almost a best of both worlds, very rare obviously. So the Vince Young/Terrelle Pryor examples come in as they haven't exactly shown themselves to be very good "passers". So, as asked in above posts, is sacrificing some accuracy and even some arm strength (and other pocket passer attributes) for some athleticism and escapability in the college game a better route to go, over recruiting the Chad Henne and Aaron Murray types (even admitting Murray can move well, just not Devin/Terrelle/Vince/Braxton-well) who can sling it but won't make certain plays utilizing their legs that can be game changers.
one of the reasons we "needed" DG's legs last week was due to defficiencies in the rest of the O, i.e. O-line, TE blocking, lack of enough high-end weapons at receiver. Once these are addressed through experience and recruiting (pretty much addressed already by recruiting - just need to keep it up.) the dual-threat nature of the QB will be more of a very-nice bonus than a necessity.
While Henne probably wouldn't have won that game with that game plan, and would have been less likely to than Gardner even with optimal game plans with both, the point that I'm making is that for the team, for the season, for where Michigan wants to go, taking a Henne or McCarron-type recruit out of high school is of more interest than taking a Gardner-esque recruit out of high school, regardless of what the outcome of the ND ended up being.
and the ND game is not the real judge - the ultimate goal for UM is championships. What type of player helps you offset "LB type speed" in SEC DE's? And LB's who run like safeties. That is the bigger picture.
you're assuming the go into the game with the same offensive game plan if McCaron is the QB instead of Gardner.
"Dual-threat" guys tend to come out of high school less polished, since they don't need their arm to win games. Plus a lot of high schools don't throw that much anyway. Gardner had the physical tools and was a great instinctive runner, but was raw as a passer.
I'd actually like to see the coaches mix it up year to year - one year, take a more polished thrower - a "sure thing" pro styler - regardless of his legs. The next, shop around for a more athletic project. Maybe that means a guy with a cannon who just needs to work on his decision making and mechanics, or maybe it means a Gardner who's a killer runner but maybe boom or bust as a passer.
That way you don't miss out on a Gardner or kaepernick, but you always have a competent game manager on hand in case that doesn't work out.
with the exception that maybe they still shoot for the "Rosen-types" every year but can afford to be more flexible if they miss, knowing that they already have a Morris or Speight in the fold. If the "next option" Dual-threat target is that talented an athelete there is also always the option to move them elsewhere to get them on the field (like Devin at WR without the monstous gaping hole at backup QB), have them as an emergency plan in case of massive injuries at QB, and even develop a wildcat package exclusively for them.Oh..and Woohoo!!!! 1000 pts finally :)
"I'd actually like to see the coaches mix it up year to year - one year, take a more polished thrower - a "sure thing" pro styler - regardless of his legs. The next, shop around for a more athletic project. Maybe that means a guy with a cannon who just needs to work on his decision making and mechanics, or maybe it means a Gardner who's a killer runner but maybe boom or bust as a passer" Look like a lot of us are on the same page...
The downside of recruiting a dual-threat QB is much less than a Pro-style QB who cannot play other positions. A prospect like Gardner was, who has a strong arm, quick feet but poor mechanics coming out of high school, can be coached to be a good passer, and if that effort failed, they can be put into other positions such as WR, LB, safeties. Someone like David Cone, will be your a bench warmer for 5 years.
You can't coach raw speed. You can coach better throwing mechanics.
Take a QB that can beat you with his feet and is at least decent with his arm... then coach the arm.
Otherwise Denard would have been great. Yes, the downside of recruiting a dual-threat as a football player is lower, but the downside of recruiting a dual-threat as a QB tends to be higher (note: tends). If you're looking for a QB or need a QB, you factor that matters is downside at that position, not downside as a football player.
On a scale of 1-10*, if your options out of high school are
QB A, who is a 6 as a passer and 7 as a runner, or...
QB B, who is a 10 as a passer and 1 as a runner...
I'll take QB A all day. That added dimension of attack more than makes up for the discrepency as a passer (which you can teach at least a point, maybe two). I know using simple arithmetic on this topic is a bit of an oversimplification, but on the surface it does show something significant. By not having running ability you're conceeding a gaping hole in your offensive arsenal.
* On this scale I'm using I'd say Denard is a 2 passer, 10 runner and Gardner (so far) is a 8 passer, 8 runner.
But let's add them up to be the same thing. If the option was:
A. 6 passer and 8 runner
B. 8 passer and a 6 runner
I'd take B every time if I was Michigan.
If you don't want to just add them up, because obviously there is more emphasis on the legs, lets look at two other options from Michigan's perspective
A. 6 passer and 8 runner
B. 8.5 passer and 3.5 runner
I probably still take option B if I'm Michigan. I think it's fair to say Gardner was realistically QB A as a HS recruit. Morris is probably close to B in the second example. As a Michigan coach with their style of play and what they want to do with the QB, I probably take QB B. Gardner has proven better as a passer than what he looked like coming out of HS, but that's a risk/reward thing again. What Gardner won't ever be is a: 10 passer, 8+ runner
But Morris can be a 10 passer, 4 runner (as far as manipulating the pocket), and at worse will still have some mobility and a well above average arm.
First, I appreciate this discussion with you. Good stuff.
With your first example (6 passer, 8 runner vs. 8 passer, 6 runner), those are so close to one another I would probably not insist on one or the other. (And the fact they add to the same value supports the indifference.)
With your second example, I disagree and would take QB A without hesitation. And when I say "I" would take QB A, I mean that if I were the coach I would take QB A, but also I feel Michigan should take QB A! I agree with you that Gardner was clearly more QB A as a HS recruit and Morris is close to QB B, But it's the statement "As a Michigan coach with their style of play and what they want to do with the QB..." that I have issue with. One of my points is that Michigan's style of play should be such that it is QB A that fits their system. So, put another way, I'm saying the square peg is the right peg, so make your hole square, not round. Michigan should be adopting a style of play that utilizes QB A. In doing so, they open that otherwise untapped dimension of attack. Failing to do so leaves that dimension on the table.
I guess I just see the running aspect as more valuable than you do, which, fair enough. While I love Denard (don't we all), I wouldn't want to sacrifice that much arm. But I really would rather another Gardner (or even a half step below Gardner, passing wise) to a Morris or Speight.
I guess my point is, if QB A turns out to be Gardner now, then yeah, I wouldn't hesitate much in taking him, because he can still fit what the coaches want to do with the position with the added benefit of passing. But what he realistically could have been I don't think does. It's not that they can't change their philosophy to try to fit the QB, it's about what QB can they utilize that gives them the best chance to win with what they want to do. I just think that's more the second QB. I think it fits better. Other teams would be different with what they want to do. I think we'll agree to disagree here as far as what Michigan should want for their system or a system they would run with the other QB.
But if you take a QB every year, that's not an issue. The point is, if Shane Morris can't learn the position, he's a bench warmer. If Devin Gardner had failed to learn the position, he's got the physical tools to be a good to great wideout, and would still contribute.
Basically, if you're taking a guy that absolutely, positively has to become your starting QB, yeah, you ought to take the more polished thrower, even at the cost of some potential upside.
But if you've already got a couple decent QBs on your roster and are recruiting for potential, a boom-or-bust dual threat is better than a boom-or-bust pocket statue.
Basically, 2015 is a great time for Michigan to look for a dual threat type, since we've already got Shane and Speight in the fold.
Though, even polished passers aren't sure things, so you have to be careful there a bit.
I think Michigan wanted Rosen because they thought he was the best at the position and provided the highest upside of them all. I think the next group will include Dillman and White, both of whom I really like. It may come down to how Bellomy has progressed back from injury, and will likely also come down to time table and other things.
I personally like Dillman at this point. I don't know about the coaches, but I think they would be fine with either one. I think actually think '16 will likely be a better time to take more of a risk on a QB, as they'll have Morris, Speight, and '15 guy assuming it's someone like White, but it'll still come down to who they think is the best, with maybe a little more willingness to take a risk.
I guess when I say "polished" I mean "closer than average to college ready". In other words, makes good reads, has good technique, plays in a system that requires him to be a good passer. Yeah, that doesn't make him a "sure thing", but his floor is probably higher.
Assuming Devin stays for 2014 and Speight redshirts, Speight either passes Morris or sits till at least 2017, at which point either Speight or Hypothetical 2015 Guy (H15G) ends up starting with at least 2 years of eligibility left, plus H16G and/or H17G backing them up. So my guess is either Speight or H15G will spend most of their career as a backup.
With that in mind, you want H15G to be a guy with a ceiling higher than Speight, even if his floor is lower. Speight strikes me as at least decent, so I think 2015 is an opportunity to swing for the fences.
Of course, we're talking game theory and hypotheticals here, when the coaches have to look at real actual human beings. *shrug*
"But if you've already got a couple decent QBs on your roster and are recruiting for potential, a boom-or-bust dual threat is better than a boom-or-bust pocket statue."
They're both pretty much the same IMO.
Difference in my opinion is that "dual threats" are much more likely to "boom or bust" candidates than pocket passers.
Generally the good high school passer has lower upside than the "dual threat" guy - but he also has a lower downside.
There are plenty of boom-or-bust pro-style quarterback prospects: guys with howitzer arms but poor technique, touch, and/or decision making. Or maybe they just don't throw much in high school. These guys could turn out elite with a little coaching, or wash out.
But I think you're more likely to hear about a boom-or-bust dual threat guy because they are more likely to be recruited at the FBS level. Plausible dual threat guys are more rare anyway, the spread is in vogue, and even the shaky passers often get interest from big schools at non QB positions.
A boom-or-bust pro-style guy is more likely to end up at a mid-major or FCS. So you'll probably never hear about them unless they blow up and get drafted.
Jay Riemersma and Andy Mignery would disagree.
As long as said Quarterback can make all the throws like Devin, or a RGIII, or Teddy Bridgewater, or Tajh Boyd, while still having the ability to beat defenses with his feet then I'm all for it. That type of quarterback is the most potent weapon to have in today's game. But if I want to win I'll take the future Peyton Manning over a future Tebow any day.
I'd take Tebow more than not over Peyton personally.
Now, if I were the Michigan coaches, I'd take Peyton over Tebow.
But personally I would not. Especially when you have defenses like Alabama and LSU these days that could easily shutdown a one dimensional player like Tebow. Tebow would have success, but as long as an Alabama or Ohio is waiting at the end of the year to play for the NC, then I am afraid you would have to settle for second best at best.
Man, I am really going to miss having these types of QBs. There were a TON of plays that Gardner created something out of nothing which were game changing moments. With our future QB stable, those would have been sure fire sacks. Even with an improved offensive line and skill players, why would you not want to combine the dual threat QB like Gardner for a maybe little better passer that can't create on his own.
People's idea of what is dual threat are way different.
Player A) Makes all the throws, can move in the pocket, roll out and deliver strikes. This is NOT a dual threat. That's just a QB that is mobile. Pro-style all the way. (Every past UM great).
Player B) Can make all the throws (less consistent then Player A), can pull on a zone read and get 15+yds, after 2nd progression he scrambles and is a weapon not a fumble/injury waiting to happen. This is a dual threat. (Troy Smith, Manziel, Forcier).
Player C) Not a good passer. Much better runner. This is a running QB. (Denard, Pat White)
The people here that want dual threats want Player B. We know that Player C won't win NCs. Player A can be great (a #1 overall pick) but IMO he has to have AA OL in the game and probably AA type WR talent to beat an elite SEC DL. The odds of having AA pro style QB, OL, and WR at the same time are slim.
A Great player B can beat that same elite SEC DL with All Big Ten WR, OL, and WR talent IMO. much more likely, and repeatable.
Good post. It should also be noted that there's a chance Player B evolves into Player ALPHA AND OMEGA, the guy who passes as well as any Player A but is also a gamebreaking threat with his legs (RG3 would be the best example of this).
Obviously QB mobility and ability to run is not the most important factor for Hoke and Borges, but it probably isn't second most important either. I think in addition to a good arm and accuracy, they're looking for a guy who has great leadership skills, isn't afraid to work hard, and who possesses the ability to read and process information rapidly. Being a true duel threat seems down the list a ways.