So, we've gnawed around the edges of this, but football is approaching and we all want to talk about this kind of thing.
There was talk in the early off-season of going to more 3 and 4-wide sets. In the last week umbig11 (at TTB) casually mentioned that they are working this in 7-on-7 drills and that it had been worked all summer.
The question is: Are we going to see a shift in formation and scheme distribution this fall? Not necessarily throwing out the old playbook, but changing how frequently certain formations and plays care called?
I believe the answer is yes. There are a some really good reasons for this:
1. A lot of rumors from different sources that the team is going this direction
2. A large quantity of ultra-talented receivers that we believe can be productive on the field, but none that are so dominant that they demand double coverage yet
3. Importantly, serious questions about the offensive line.
It's #3 that seems like the most important factor in the switch, to me. This is a good article discussing the Patriots ultra-powerful short passing game. Very prominent in this article is a discussion of "time to release" for Tom Brady. Spoiler: He gets his passes out quickly.
This is going to be key for a Michigan team with questions all over the OL. It's a great way to use the WR and slot talent in ways that exploit their strengths. It plays to the strengths our two top RBs have in space and (in Evans case) as pass-catchers.
I believe Michigan is making a concerted change in focus here. It won't be the Pats, but it will look a lot more like them.
But I might crazy. What do others think about this?