Is it time to unshackle Rudock?

Submitted by 991GT3 on October 4th, 2015 at 12:17 PM

Let's face it, Rudock is playing not to make a mistake and as a result playing tight and frankly not effectively. The only time he will throw a pass is if the receiver is WIDE open and even then he tries to directly the pass rather than letting his natural instincts throw the ball. As a result often his passes are off the mark, late or though catchable doesn't afford his receivers any room to run after the catch. Good defense will have tight coverages on receivers and good QB's nevertheless throw to those receivers allowing them to make plays (Butts catch in the the endzone against Utah had double coverage and Darboh's catch against perfect coverage by BYU gave the team a needed boost).

Without a passing threat the running game will be neutralized. We can get away with this playing inferior teams but as we get into the meat of the schedule, Rudock needs to play to win and not play not to make mistakes. Football is won by scoring points. 

My thought is this. We have an outstanding defense which most of the time will cover up for offensive mistakes. WE can not beat NW, MSU and OSU with only good defense. We need a QB who will play to win games even though like all QB's he will make an occasion mistake. Let him play loose throwing to receivers even though there may be good coverage AND not be handcuffed to one read and then run.




October 4th, 2015 at 1:00 PM ^

Game planning, in-game adjustments, and play calling are getting the O 10 - 14 points more than talent and matchups would "naturally" achieve. I want whatever JH wants. I want it when he wants it.

Harbaugh is aware of everything regarding Rudock and his decisions will be as good as you can hope. They won't always work because Rudock is limited, but we'll see the best Rudock he can be over the course of the year...whatever that is.


October 4th, 2015 at 12:22 PM ^

As long as the games are in control theres no need to go crazy with the passing game. The run games been a B- thru 5 games which is better then what i expected at this point. If michigan gets down in a game (hopefully this doesnt happen) then Harbaugh will be forced to open up the paly book a little more and trust Ruddock to make the throws. The next 2 games will tell us a lot about our defense and how good Ruddock really is before going into the BYE week


October 4th, 2015 at 12:26 PM ^

Harbaugh knows quarterbacks. No offense to your post. I simply don't agree with it. JH knows what Ruddock is capable of and what he is not. Letting Ruddock fling it at will is not his strong suit. This kid needs structure.


October 4th, 2015 at 12:28 PM ^

I have felt that Harbaugh is waiting to unleash Rudock and some really nice pass plays for MSU. We seem so reserved on offense and my concern is because we aren't good enough to take shots but my heart is telling me its Harbaugh keeping his cards close to his chest.

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October 4th, 2015 at 12:36 PM ^

While I don't doubt there will be a few wrinkles for MSU and later OSU (how great it feels to finally have a coach we can say that about!), I don't think Harbaugh was trying to keep Rudock on a significantly shorter leash than he otherwise would, unless he's also psychic and knew the D was going to allow 14 points in four games. During games is the best time to work kinks out, so you'd want to just let him play. If you're right then this really has been one of the great coaching rope-a-dopes of all time.  

Beat the bucks

October 4th, 2015 at 12:37 PM ^

I hope you're right. That's the feeling I've been getting too considering he pulled out all the stops throwing the ball 43 times in the Utah game.

These last four games we have been able to rely on our running game without forcing anything. I really wish we saw more deep shots taken just to practice them, but maybe Harbaugh values the surprise air assault as more valuable than the couple game completions we would get in a blowout win

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October 4th, 2015 at 12:29 PM ^

Between Jedd Fisch and Jim Harbaugh I think we have the QB coaching thing pretty much covered. I think they are aware that JR is missing on the downfield stuff and I'm going to trust this staff to find the answers.



October 4th, 2015 at 12:33 PM ^

Rudock cant see the entire field and go through progressions. If the first options isnt wide open he is pretty much sol and its going to be incomplete or a pick.


Suffice to say what we got is what we got, but teams have won national titles with bad QB's and I trust in Harbaugh to throw in enough rinkles to keep defenses off balance, im just worried that we dont face another defense like Utah that can exploit Rudock.


October 4th, 2015 at 12:35 PM ^

Tell Brian to pick up the red emegency direct phone line to Harbaugh STAT! Harbaugh must be informed asap that there is a poster on mgoblog he can learn from!! 

Coach Carr Camp

October 4th, 2015 at 12:36 PM ^

This isn't a shackled Rudock, and this is not him still learning the offense or getting used to receivers. People need to accept that this is the Rudock we got and should have expected from the start. He is a decidedly average qb and he is the best we have, but if he has a better outing he gives a a chance to beat anyone in the B10.


October 4th, 2015 at 12:37 PM ^

The gameplans and play-calling have been excellent. He's had so many opportunities and still can't hit the deep ball for whatever reason. I don't see what else the coaches can do for him.


October 4th, 2015 at 12:59 PM ^

in watching the games, it seems he only is "seeing half the field". that's a gameplane/coaching thing. I'm not saying it's wrong just pointing it out. if a play is supposed run right, it just seems being being coached to not look left even if there a route option on that side. I'm sure teams are seeing this on tape and against better defenses, will not fly


October 4th, 2015 at 1:25 PM ^

That's just one example where Rudock had a play-action roll out he has a hi/low option and the wideout is wide open down the field. He dumped it down to Poggi for two yards.

He's had countless opportunities like this since the Utah game and just can't hit em'. At least put the ball in the vicinity of the receiver. Blaming the coaches is just weak.

Sac Fly

October 4th, 2015 at 12:38 PM ^

He's built habits and tendencies as a result of playing in an offense that doesn't throw the ball deeper than 5 yards. That's doesn't get fixed overnight.


October 4th, 2015 at 4:42 PM ^

We're getting a sense of why Rudock may have not been the frontrunner for their offense.

As it turns out, QBs need...coaching. Devin Garder didn't get it, and went backward. Rudock is getting some development for maybe the first time, and his head is clearly spinning.


October 4th, 2015 at 12:41 PM ^

I'm pretty sure JH is different than most college coaches. He doesn't have a problem with winning with vanilla plays. He doesn't need to empty his playbook to beat Maryland 60-0, when he can win 28-0 without revealing much. He's saving the wrinkles for when he needs them.

Sten Carlson

October 4th, 2015 at 1:13 PM ^

100% agree.

IMO, if the game feels under control -- a common feel with such a great defense -- Harbaugh is content to pound the ball, play field position/time of possession, and occasional dial up something explosive. Without the turnovers yesterday, Michigan wins by at least another 10 and maybe another 21.

Guys are wringing their hands about what will happen when we play a "good defense" because they believe Harbaugh will just run into a stacked box all game and Rudock won't be able to make the defense pay over the top. I disagree. Everything that Haubaugh does is a set up for something else. He's crafting an image that he wants opposing DC's to see, and then he going to use this image against them when they least expect it.

Don't be surprised to see Harbaugh and Drevno throw a nice break in tendency at Fitz's Wildcat defense, even more acutely than they did against BYU.


October 4th, 2015 at 2:03 PM ^

I lost count of how many times yesterday that Millen said "the fullback will take you to the ball every time." He was right. So, I figure pretty soon we'll see some M hit a big play by running some kind of counter where the fullback heads to the backside and pulls several defenders away from the POA. But yeah, JH didn't seem too concerned with messing up Maryland's run keys.