Say Denard recovers and is 100% by Saturday: who starts?

Submitted by orobs on November 19th, 2012 at 5:42 PM
Don't know if hoke was just coach speaking, or denard is actually almost ready to throw.



November 19th, 2012 at 5:50 PM ^

"May be able to throw" is a far cry from being 100%.  At best, Denard will likely only be able to be relied upon to complete short passes.  He will probably get more snaps at QB than he did against Iowa, but I really think that the coaching staff would be nuts to remove Gardner as the primary QB given his performance the last few weeks.  

One good thing though:  OSU will have a tough time coming up with a game plan for this one.


November 19th, 2012 at 7:52 PM ^

Even with Denard at a 100%, the offense is not very good with him at QB. Remember, we didn't score a TD for 10 straight quarters, if I recall correctly. I love Denard to death, but Devin has shown much better decision making ability and much better accuracy than Denard ever has, especially in this offense. Our offense is at it's best with Devin at the helm and Denard at RB.


November 19th, 2012 at 8:21 PM ^

I'm thinking about how well Denard played in The Game last year, plus the fact that Devin has three career starts. I could very well be wrong, and we'll get some idea of that shortly, but going into this game I feel like I can count on a 100% Denard to come out with the win, and I'm not sure I feel the same way with Devin yet.


November 19th, 2012 at 8:52 PM ^

The question I answered wasn't, "What offense do you think M will run on Saturday?", the question was, "If Denard is 100%, do you start Denard or Devin?". I don't think we'll start only Denard or go back to the pre-Iowa offense, and I recognize how well Gardner has played in his three starts. I just happen to think if both are at 100% I'd start Robinson on Saturday, for the reasons I gave above.

Also, like I said above, I could easily be wrong. Either way, the question is predicated on both players being 100%, and didn't ask what offense we thought we would see in Columbus.


November 20th, 2012 at 8:43 AM ^

I would've agreed almost 100% with what you're saying. The biggest difference that I see is our Oline. It's not even close to being as effective as it was last year. I just don't know if we'll get the push we'd need to replicate last year's performance w/ Denard.

For reference; I've been smacking people down for a month now as they kept blathering about how Denard should play RB and Devin QB. I'm starting to second guess myself.


November 19th, 2012 at 5:45 PM ^

Our best chance to win is to have Devin at QB and Denard sharing the backfield as an RB/Slot. If he is able to throw then it's an added bonus, maybe he can catch them by surprise a few times.

I hope he gets to throw a few passes but I find it verrrrrrry hard to argue against the fact that Gardner gives us the best chance to win at QB.


November 20th, 2012 at 7:30 AM ^

WHAT we saw against Iowa...just endless opportunity, and from what I have seen in three games against standard/subpar defenses, Devin is in a groove and is the man for the job. Mixing Denard in at RB, SLOT, WR, QB, WILDCATISH...defense has to find him on the field at all times. With Iowa you could see the entire defense shift depending on where Denard lined up and with good reason to boot...Devin is the natural qb for this offense, Denard is too great of a man, too great of an athlete to sit on the sideline or go out without some sort of effort from him anywhere and everywhere on that field. Nothing against Denard, I want to see him go out with a win against ohio under the best possible circumstances for the TEAM...THE TEAM...THE TEAM.


November 19th, 2012 at 5:45 PM ^

I hate this scenario, but I think Gardner starts at QB, Denard at RB.  Frankly it seems to be the most effective way to get both athletes on the field at the same time. 


November 19th, 2012 at 5:46 PM ^

I was debating with someone about this BEFORE the iowa game. Before the Iowa game I would've said Denard, but I think you have to go with Devin now. You can always switch it up if things aren't working.

OR, maybe you start Denard to mind-fuck ohio. I don't really know. That's why I'm not Brady Hoke.


November 19th, 2012 at 5:47 PM ^

Both. The Devin Denard packaged worked well when Denard couldn't throw, and could be even more dangerous if Denard has a passing option. You could always swing Gardner out as an WR on plays and put Denard under center. 


November 19th, 2012 at 5:47 PM ^

At qb, denard has struggled throwing the ball before injury, we couldn't get into the endzone. Devin has been better, play denard like we did last week, it is what is best for the team.


November 19th, 2012 at 11:48 PM ^

You're right.

But I think the reason people have a problem with it here more than other places is because the people on this board fancy this place to be somewhere that rational thought and open discourse prevails.  Often it is but in instances where that turns out not to be the case it smacks of hypocrisy and that's I think what irritates people.

*awaits crucifixion* :P


November 19th, 2012 at 11:53 PM ^

This is very true and what kinda bothers me about this board is that this kind of "board orthodoxy" gets enforced in the moderation.

For example a couple weeks ago there was a thread saying Gardner should be the starter even if Denard was healthy.

That thread was locked.

I did not agree with that opinion and still don't.  I wouldn't have participated in the discussion had the thread remained unlocked, but why shouldn't other people have been allowed to discuss it if they want to?  

Yes, yes, this is a privately owned site, I get that, but, the modding here is downright draconian at times when there are relevant topcs that aren't even allowed to be on the table for discussion.


November 19th, 2012 at 5:48 PM ^

He's played too well to not let him start at QB.    Denard should play the role that he played last week-- if he can throw, it makes him that much harder to defend.     I think this is especially true with Fitz being out.   


November 19th, 2012 at 5:50 PM ^

As in starts- the first guy under center? That will be Denard. But I see it being like last week the rest of the game. I think Denard can throw - but probably not 40yds with accuracy.



November 19th, 2012 at 5:51 PM ^

I think the Fitz injury may make this question irrelvent... Devin at QB, Denard at TB

The offense has proven it does not need the big 6'4" WR, so Devin isn't needed there.  Get both on the field at the same time =  Denard at TB is more needed than Devin at WR.


November 19th, 2012 at 5:55 PM ^

echo everyone's thoughts.  It'd be nice to run that option play but instead of a pitch, a forward pass deep... that or a QB Oh Noes.  I wish Hoke was more tight lipped about Denard this week.


November 19th, 2012 at 5:55 PM ^

Denard can do that.

Personally I think you put them both on the field, but preferably have the guy with a 190+ QB rating throwing the ball off play action, and keeping Ohio's safeties honest.

Ohio has a fine team right now and probably comes in a big favorite.

But this November has been kind of weird.  I think Michigan pulls off a big upset.


November 19th, 2012 at 5:55 PM ^

Our offense the way it is now with Gardner at QB and Robinson being moved around has proved effective and hard to stop. Keep it that way and keep Ohio guessing. Gardner's arm against their devensive backfield is an advantage we have to take. Theres no fucking around THE TEAM, THE TEAM, THE TEAM, we need this one.


November 19th, 2012 at 5:59 PM ^

I'm very glad that it's a legitimate question at this point.

Before Iowa, I would have said Denard at QB, same offense we were running before Nebraska. After the last game, things are looking a little different.

First of all, Denard hasn't had much time practicing at QB of late. He was almost completely out of practice for two weeks, and his practice last week was limited, at least as far as passing is concerned. This would make it harder for him to step in and pilot the offense as he has in the past.

Second, Devin has really impressed me with his accuracy lately. Competion caveats are warrented, but he's looked really good.

And lastly, the offense they cooked up last week with Devin and Denard lining up all over the field was absolutly tantalising. If I knew that both QBs were 100% going into The Game, and for some reason I was in charge of dictating Michigan's offensive game plan (let's all hope this never happens), I'd base the offense around what we saw against Iowa, with more time for Denard at QB, even throwing some passes.

Blue since birth

November 19th, 2012 at 6:01 PM ^

Denard at 100% or the same as he was last week changes nothing for me. I think he's technically the "starter" but I hope/expect that Devin gets the most reps at QB with Denard mixed in liberally wherever/whenever possible.

Basically the same thing I've felt should at least be given a real chance for the last two seasons.


November 19th, 2012 at 5:59 PM ^

I'm in with "Both." I think you go for broke, have both of them in the backfield, and between Denard running, Devin running, Devin passing, and even Denard passing, Devin receiving and Denard receiving, you drive the Ohio defense crazy. At this point, winning in Columbus makes it worth the risk. If they're next to each other, it makes it that much harder for the defense to know what to do.

I do think that even if Denard is at 100%, he isn't the passer that Devin is. I don't know what kind of runner Devin is, because we really haven't seen anything but scrambles.