Please No QB controversy....

Submitted by New Carr on October 16th, 2010 at 7:35 PM

1)  I know D-Rob and the offense struggled again to finish drives, and Tate played well and seems to still be the better passer, but make no mistake, D-Rob is the qb of this team and it should remain that way.

2)  To everyone that keeps saying "we beat ourselves", turnovers and penalties, etc...I am tired of this explanation.  Good teams either don't commit these errors, or are so superior that they can overcome such situations.  I used to be in the "we are cursed" and "shitty luck" camp....but this is not voodoo my friends.  The same shit keeps happening.  This is a trend.  A lot of this has to do with young players, and a lot of this is on coaching.

3)  Enjoying the fast start by the Wisky Meat Machine against OSU.  Unfortunately I think we are screwed against both.  We need to beat Illinois, PSU, and Purdue or this can be a really ugly off-season again.



October 16th, 2010 at 8:17 PM ^

he has 2min to score a td and get the ball back. he had no choice but to force the ball down the field. how bout we judge him on his play when he wasnt being forced to throw it deep. those last two plays shouldnt even be included in an evaluation of his performance.

i think there will be a serious conversation if denard continues to struggle against top-tier offenses. it seems that if the offense cant force the safeties to shade up to stop the run, denard struggles with passing downfield. in those situations, tate seems like a legit option.

while i dont think tate make a serious push to start, as long as denard is healthy, i do think there are occasions where his skillset can be taken advantage of.


October 16th, 2010 at 9:53 PM ^

Denard was not at his best but I don't think Denard's play was necessarily the problem.   He rushed for over 100 yards and threw the ball fairly well (decent not great) but the bigger problem seemed to be the playcalling and penalties that keep killing drives.

Some of the playcalling has been highly suspect of late and a number of times we marched the ball down the field (getting 7 yard runs on 1st down, moving the ball) only to have penalties back us up and kill drives.   

I wouldn't be so quick to change quarterbacks after a couple of sub par games.   Every quarterback has ups and downs.... particularly young ones.   You have to let them play through it.    

Pea-Tear Gryphon

October 16th, 2010 at 7:48 PM ^

I would like to see both QB's get snaps here on out. They are so different and bring their own skill sets to the game that it would be a bitch to prepare for defensively. Not a controversy, but more like a Leak/Tebow situation. Play them both and ride the hot hand.


October 16th, 2010 at 7:48 PM ^

...just play both.  Both are TEAM players, and the TEAM is more important than either individual.  I think both players would be happy as long as the team was winning.  It may derail the "Denard for Heisman" campaign, but this team needs to move the ball, and I am convinced that the best chance is for them not to limit themselves to either QB. 


October 16th, 2010 at 8:00 PM ^

      Your logic is flawed, a team that is not very good can't beat themselves because they would not be in the game to begin with. If you wanted to say that we executed poorly, or we had a few mental mistakes then o.k. but I would like for you to go into the Michigan locker room and make the same comment that you just made. They fought and clawed their way back into a game against one of the best teams in the country and I would think they should get just a little more respect than you are giving.


October 16th, 2010 at 7:52 PM ^

Your post is all over the place.  What exactly are you trying to say?  Denard is the QB...period.  Our O sucked, and lost the game.....these are not new observations.


October 16th, 2010 at 7:53 PM ^

You admit that Denard struggled, and that Tate is the better passer. If you think there's no QB controversy, can you at least present a reason for why Denard is clearly the starter?

BTW, how hurt is Denard, anyways?

New Carr

October 16th, 2010 at 7:56 PM ^

I am advocating patience with the young players, but expecting improvements.  Einstein's definition of insanity is what I wish we could avoid....We keep doing the same things and expecting a different outcome.   When I say expectations I am not referring to some mindless benchmark like "RR needs X # of wins to save his job."  Instead, I am watching the games and want to see player progress, and team development.  Thus far, I have seen a lot of improvement this year on offense, most obviously the O-line, and D-Rob and his connection with the recievers.  The turnovers and penalties in the last two games, however, are a relapse of last year's errors.

As for the defense, it has been discussed ad-nauseum, but call me crazy....I think there have been some improvements the past couple weeks.  Considering how young they are, it is hard to be too critical, especially of the secondary.


October 16th, 2010 at 7:58 PM ^

They are both YOUNG QBs with different strengths. They give our team two very different looks that are both very hard to prepare for. The fact is that the weaknesses of each QB make it necessary to have both and play both. Denard has made huge improvements in the offseason. However, against good defenses, he shows his youth and the room he has for growth. NEXT SEASON, I can see him nailing down the final job and running this gig from start to finish. However, this season his weaknesses necessitate that HE become the ENTIRE offense. That should win us games against PSU, Illinois & Purdue. Against Wiscy and OSU, I do not think that Denard can do it alone.

We should be THRILLED to have this problem of having two QBs that can run the system. I am sure OSU would love to have someone competent to sub out Pryor with.


October 16th, 2010 at 8:07 PM ^

The offense is best when the opposition is kept guessing, and if that means having two legit QB options, so be it.  Denard dominated early in the season because teams had to worry about the run and the pass; the past two weeks, teams have dared him to throw and he's struggled.  Tate isn't the runner Denard is, but he is a more accurate passer and could be an asset.  Personally, I'm not a huge fan of the 2 QB system, but when you have two good QBs it doesn't hurt to find ways to get them both involved.  At this point, this team needs to win a game or two and get the collective confidence back, and if that means playing Tate in certain situations and Denard in others, so be it.  Egos might be bruised, but a winning season and a bowl game should helped to soothe those feelings.

New Carr

October 16th, 2010 at 8:23 PM ^

Perhaps it is you who are a bit slow to process information....

My post is not "all over the place." 

You see, as complex, developed creatures, some human being have the capacity to present seemingly contradictory information that in actuality elicit debate and may refer to different aspects of the same issue.  Not everyone can be George Bush and have a 100% certainty or simplistic explanation for the entirety of a complicated situation.

1)  To say Tate is a better passer but  should not be the starter, may seem contradictory to a simple binary mind such as yours.  But ....OMG, there's more to being a qb than passing, like the 1000 yards Denard has run for.  Oh, and the fact that this forces defenses to change the way they play Michigan, and correspondingly puts Denard into better situations when needing to pass....IE, if Michigan is still in a situation where Denard is a threat to run (the game is not out of reach), he is an extremely effective passer because of the way the defense needs to account for him.

2)  One can advocate patience with players while still expecting the same errors in fundamentals to not occur every week.  For example, a CB getting burned on a double move or out and up is something I would ask fans to have patience with, especially when these players are freshmen.  Or Denard making the wrong read on a run pass option that leads to a sack is another example of a situation where I would expect patience, given this is his first year starting.....However, throwing a ball up for grabs into double coverage, getting unsportsmanlike conduct penalties, and not wrapping up the ball with two arms when running through traffic are mistakes I would expect to have corrected....after 3 years of repetition.

So my point, to one as obviously unevolved and simplistic as you, is to realize that you can be both patient and have expectations, and there is more to being a qb (especially in the RR system) than how accurately you can throw a 15 yard crossing pattern.

STW P. Brabbs

October 16th, 2010 at 8:24 PM ^

Is the best player on the team.  He needs to work through his struggles, but he's the future of the program for the next couple of years (yes, I know who Devin Gardner is, I just think Denard has a big-play dimension that is unmatched.  Revolutionary, I know.)

Anyhoo, what I think the team really needs is to learn how to run the fake fake punt better (what I like to call the ol' Tape Our Dicks Up Against Our Thighs and Play to Keep the Score Close Kaboodle).   Then we will fill our bellies with the sweet nectar of victory.  Then we will know football bliss.  VALHALLA.

Gustavo Fring

October 16th, 2010 at 10:24 PM ^

But today really made me reconsider.  Think about that long pass to Hemingway.  We had Iowa back on their heels.  If we had a quarterback who was effective running and throwing this offense would be more of a big-play threat.  Denard is not breaking them against faster defenses.  If he could loosen them up with some downfield throws, he might be able to.

I think Devin is the future.  Once he becomes savvy with the read-option and gets a little better with his mechanics, he will take this offense to new levels.  He is the only qb on the roster who could make the throws (a lot of them) that Tate made and also give defenses headaches with his running ability. 

STW P. Brabbs

October 17th, 2010 at 2:08 PM ^

You mean the one where Tate threw it a little bit short and to the inside shoulder but it didn't matter because the closest defender was 15 yards away?  Or the Rex Grossmanian Throwgasm jump ball that Hemingway came down with?

I've seen Denard make better deep passes this year.  He's just had his confidence shaken the past couple of weeks. 


October 16th, 2010 at 8:37 PM ^

OP, I don't think you can say "Please no QB controversy" and then just use that to tell us, like, your opinion man.

Not saying you're wrong, just that you're not really being even handed here nahmeen.


October 16th, 2010 at 8:59 PM ^

I entered this season hoping we'd see some type of two QB system depending on what our opponents' weaknesses are.

Then Denard started throwing it and looked pretty decent, until he started to experience stronger defenses.

Last week I was yelling "send in Tate" at my TV. Logic: MSU had shut down Denard with contain, time to go airborne. This week Tate came in and showed he could do it - though he's a little game rusty. Not that Denard wasn't getting it done before he got hit in the arm.

So I am back to thinking a two QB system would be better for the remainder of the season.


October 16th, 2010 at 9:03 PM ^

All I can say is that the bye week came at a perfect time. Everyone can relax and get healthy and then get back into the groove of things for this season.


October 16th, 2010 at 9:54 PM ^

No QB controversy? Why? I'm pretty sure RR has said whoever gives the team the best chance to win will play. I'm kinda drunk but against good defense it seems Tate gives us the best chance. Nard Dog is a great runner and a decent passer, while Tater is a good passer and a good runner.

For one OP  if Tate had started the last 2 games I'm sure they would have been closer. I know hindsight is 20/20 but I've been yelling for Tate for the last 1.5 games. If your going to ditch the run like during the MSU game put Tate in.

Ok let me just break it down if D-Rob is averaging 5 yards a carry, put Tate in. Game over. I know people get caught up in "OMG Heisman" but Tate it the better QB. I know it hurts to admit but its the truth. D-Rob can break down weak, young defenses, but mature smart ones will kill him.

Tate QB1 DROB RB1=more points then the other team.   Please prove me you cant.

Gustavo Fring

October 16th, 2010 at 10:09 PM ^

Denard's accuracy is simply not where it needs to be. Forcier's problems are between the ears. When he is in rhythm, throwing from the pocket he can make any throw.  He is a MUCH better passer than Denard.

But Tate still makes some bad decisions when he scrambles (though Denard's pick was an AWFUL read).  Both still have a long way to go, and yet we put up 500 yards on the Number 1 defense in the country.

Also if Vincent Smith does not see another snap at RB (didn't mind him split out so much) I won't be disappointed.  I don't think he brings anything to the table that Shaw and Hopkins don't

STW P. Brabbs

October 17th, 2010 at 2:11 PM ^

I agree with you overall, but while Denard should settle down in the pocket and trust his instincts, I'm not sure more patience  is what the doctor ordered right now.  I think he needs to make his first and second reads, and either pull the trigger decisively or fucking take off.  His great luxury is that in abandoning pass plays quickly, he will still be very likely to get some positive yards, and will break a few of those scrambles for big gains.  I think he's actually trying too hard to be a pocket passer right now. 


October 16th, 2010 at 10:38 PM ^

isn't necessarily a recipe for disaster. I agree with trying to get snaps for both of them to maximize the benefits of the different skill sets. However, we are all nothing more than interested observers and RR will do whatever he thinks will give the team the best chance to win. This year will (and has already been) an improvement over last year. You don't go from cupboard-bare 3-9 one season to playing for the NC overnight. I suspect next year will be the true make or break season for Rodriguez.


October 16th, 2010 at 10:48 PM ^

I don't see the harm in playing Tate more if Denard appears to be struggling or they are going away from the run
<br>The past two games Denard hasn't had the same running opportunities, making him and Tate more interchangeable. Some times the team just needs a spark.