November 10, 2012; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Michigan Wolverines head coach Brady Hoke and safety Jarrod Wilson (22) against the Northwestern Wildcats at Michigan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Michigan Wolverines: Redux Question Marks of 2014

November 10, 2012; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Michigan Wolverines head coach Brady Hoke and safety Jarrod Wilson (22) against the Northwestern Wildcats at Michigan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

GBMWolverine Coach's Corner2Posted at 4:45am — 8/25/2014

Michigan Wolverines: Redux Question Marks of 2014

Redux: Those Pesky Football Question Marks

Michigan’s Concerns Compared to the Past

The last two, or so, years, produced one preseason article involving team question marks. Only the player names needed to be changed, the content remained nearly constant.

So how does this year’s question marks compare with the recent past? Read on to see the GBMWolverine answer. Question marks will be referred to as concerns.

Jul 28, 2014; Chicago, IL, USA; Michigan Wolverines head coach Brady Hoke addresses the media during the Big Ten football media day at Hilton Chicago. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

For near forever, it seems, the offensive line has been identified as the number one team concern. The past concern was high; it remains high. If there were to be created a semi- imaginary scale to measure the level of a concern, the scale may read thusly:

5 – Massive concern, dire straits is apt, blow it up.
4 – An obvious concern that is substantiated by observation and performance data.
3 – The concern is arguable, the result likely will not be dire, but neither glorious.
2 – The preponderance of evidence indicates little chance of a major concern.
1 – There is no concern, next topic please.

The offensive line loses two tackles, an automatic concern, and returns an inside group that struggled.

Last year – 3.5
This year – 3.0 to 3.5

Doug Nussmeier 1The quarterback play and associated errors were a big concern last year.

Last year – 3.5
This year – 3.0 to 2.5

The receivers were a concern because of depth and an injury to Darbah. The concern has been abated by depth but the quarterback(s) still must execute and get the ball to the talented youngsters.

Last year – 3.0
This year – 2.0

The running backs were only a moderate concern because of the arrival of Green and Johnson and the return of Fitz. Things did not work out. Regardless of the offensive line situation, the back situation is better, but the rating is more cautious.

Last year – 3.0
This year – 3.0 depends on the line

Jul 28, 2014; Chicago, IL, USA; Michigan Wolverines defensive end Frank Clark addresses the media during the Big Ten football media day at Hilton Chicago. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

Jul 28, 2014; Chicago, IL, USA; Michigan Wolverines defensive end Frank Clark addresses the media during the Big Ten football media day at Hilton Chicago. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

The defensive line leaked for two straight years bad enough to be more than an annoyance. Big Will is two years removed and Big Q is one year removed. Moving into the fray steps some big, quick guys. Push and pass rush were mediocre.

Last year – 3.5
This year – 3.0 to 2.5

The defensive ends had trouble with contain and setting the edge. Good talent has yet to get it done. But getting the 4-3 over may provide some relief to the strong side end. The pass rush was simply insufficient.

Last year – 3.5
This year – 3.0

Jul 28, 2014; Chicago, IL, USA; Michigan Wolverines linebacker Jake Ryan addresses the media during the Big Ten football media day at Hilton Chicago. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

Jul 28, 2014; Chicago, IL, USA; Michigan Wolverines linebacker Jake Ryan addresses the media during the Big Ten football media day at Hilton Chicago. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

The linebackers had trouble shedding blocks, reading keys, being successful in gap coverage, and getting to the action area. Much has improved, even though it could be argued UM has not hit anyone but a UM player.

Last year – 3.5
This year – 2.0

The defensive backfield was a major concern due to the injury to Countess and all of the newcomers. They are still young, but more in tune with the assignment and a dose of Pepper has been added.

Last year – 4.0
This year – 3.0

The final result comes out a 3. Now that is hard to argue and some may say starting and ending here may have saved time. True, but not nearly as interesting the reading would be.

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Written by GBMWolverine Staff — Doc4Blu

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