This Week’s Obsession: Most Desired Breakout Player

This Week’s Obsession: Most Desired Breakout Player

Submitted by Seth on May 8th, 2017 at 2:44 PM


You break out or I will. [Bryan Fuller]

The Question:

You get a magic wand to anoint any Michigan player an instant all-Big Ten, except an offensive tackle else we'd all just be naming backup OTs.

Brian: This might be dumb.

Ace: We’re all gonna go with CBs, right?

Brian: I'm going with Quinn Nordin?

Ace: Never mind.

The Responses:

Brian: I mean, #collegekickers, right? And if Nordin can hit them straight you've got four years of NFL range and accuracy plus kickoff returns that amount to "lol no".

Is that crazy?

Adam: I was going with Ron Johnson because please someone anyone D-line depth. and it'd be nice to have a guy that can play SDE and 3T.

Brian: I feel Ron Johnson is an invalid selection since to be All Big Ten you have to have some opportunity to play and TBH he does not.

An instantly playable James Hudson could give Michigan a solid two-deep at DL.

Adam: But who are the backups?

Brian: Dwumfour and Solomon.

Ace: In terms of value added over another position on the roster, Nordin isn’t crazy. Dropoff from his ceiling to the backups is bigger than most any other spot on the roster.

Brian: Yeah, I mean it would be nice if Devin Bush was ABT but I'm not stressed if he isn't.

Adam: I'm going more for the principle than a specific player but I really haven no idea who the backup 3T will be. Marshall? Hudson? DIB?

Ace: I’d guess Hudson. He’s outrageously strong.

David: Maybe Gary if they can find snaps for a freshman at anchor?

Ace: Gary might slide inside on some obvious passing downs but he’d be better utilized on the edge. I think that’s a last resort that won’t be needed.

Seth: Kemp is the backup at anchor. Of all the backup DL that’s the spot I’m least worried about.

[Hit THE JUMP for more of us ignoring the offense because you really cut our legs out with this tackle rule.]

Preview 2015: Wide Receiver

Preview 2015: Wide Receiver

Submitted by Brian on August 28th, 2015 at 11:11 AM

Previously: Podcast 7.0. The Story. Quarterback. Running Back.

[NOTE! This section uses the UFR catch chart. Passes are rated on a three point scale for catchability. 3: routine. 2: moderate. 1: difficult. There's also a zero for times when the player was thrown to without any chance of a reception.]

Depth Chart

WR Yr. WR Yr. SLOT Yr. Flex Yr.
Amara Darboh Jr.* Jehu Chesson Jr.* Grant Perry Fr. Jake Butt Jr.
Moe Ways Fr.* Drake Harris Fr.* Brian Cole Fr. Ian Bunting Fr.*
Jaron Dukes So.* Da'Mario Jones Jr. Jabrill Peppers Fr.* Khalid Hill So.*

[NOTE: though flex tight ends are listed above since they will fill some of the WR snaps they are addressed in the TE & Friends post, not here.] 

Last year's WR corps was a bit like the famous Braylon/Avant/Breaston trio if those guys had been coached by a potato and inserted into a disaster of an offense and gradually lost their will to live and halfway through the season they accidentally left Breaston in Piscataway and Breaston had to fend off a pair of cartoonishly dumb burglars with a series of elaborate traps.


artist's impression via Seth

This year's WR corps is down the Braylon and Breaston equivalent-type-substances, leaving only a substantially more unproven version of Avant, Jehu Chesson, and a bunch of guys who have seen maybe six snaps between them.

But Drake Harris maybe? Shh. You'll spook the hamstring. Let's be nice to the hamstring. Good hamstring. Does hamstring want a treat? Yes it does. Nice hamstring.


Rating: 2.


[Patrick Barron]

As soon as Devin Funchess declared for the NFL draft, AMARA DARBOH became this year's presumptive #1 wide receiver. Normally that would be met with mild optimism since Darboh is a touted recruit entering his redshirt junior year with decent production. Also he did this:

But in the crater left after last year's offense got done with our brains it's hard to be positive about anything in the micro. (The macro, of course: HARBAUGH.)

In the tortured analogy above, Darboh is our substantially more unproven Avant. Avant was of course a quality possession receiver and slant merchant who is not much of a threat to take the top off a defense. When Darboh had a catchable ball come his way, he looked fairly similar:

He is not likely to be as good as Avant because Avant is 100 out of 100 in certain skills. Darboh might be very good and still a standard deviation below that level of performance.