Let’s see more of this guy on offense . . . Zach Charbonnet. The true freshman earned the first start for a freshman in a season opener since Sam McGuffie in 2008. And let me throw out the suggestion that Charbonnet will have a better career in a Michigan uniform (McGuffie had 486 rushing yards, 175 receiving yards, and 4 touchdowns in his one season in Ann Arbor). Charbonnet had 8 carries for 90 yards and 2 catches for 9 yards. He showed some toughness, vision, pass catching ability, pass blocking ability, and a little bit of speed.
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Let’s see less of this guy on offense . . . Dylan McCaffrey. McCaffrey is a fine athlete in his own right, but Michigan has a way of bogging down its offense when they try to run gadget plays. If you’re going to come up with a package of 3-4 plays for the backup QB to be on the field, I’m okay with it. But make sure you can run it to perfection. Sometimes with gadget plays/packages, Michigan looks like they ran the play once or maybe twice in practice before putting it in prime time. On top of that, you need to script smarter plays for McCaffrey, and an inside screen ain’t it.
Let’s see more of this guy on defense . . . Jordan Glasgow. Glasgow got the start at WILL linebacker over Devin Gil and made 6 tackles, 2 tackles for loss, and 2 sacks. He’s on pace for 72 tackles, 24 tackles for loss, and 24 sacks. Gil started for all of 2018 and ended up with 33 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss, and 1.5 sacks. For the record, I’m NOT suggesting that Glasgow will keep up anything approximating that pace, but I am suggesting that Glasgow did things we’ve never seen Gil even flash the ability to do.
Let’s see less of this guy on defense . . . Ben Mason. I thought Mason (3 tackles) did an okay job at defensive tackle, though not much should be made of it because of the lack of a quality opponent. But his presence on the starting defensive line means Donovan Jeter and Mike Dwumfour aren’t up to speed. Hopefully those other guys can get healthy and relegate Mason to being the rotational piece that he should be.
Play of the game . . . Jordan Glasgow’s second sack. Glasgow channeled some Chase Winovich with the effort he put in to sack Asher O’Hara for a second time. Glasgow whiffed on O’Hara up the middle and O’Hara scrambled to his left, but Glasgow changed direction, caught back up to him, and dragged him down by the jersey with a diving effort.
MVP of the game . . . Shea Patterson. I guess some people have been saying bad things about Patterson in the aftermath of that game, but I don’t understand that at all. Patterson fumbled early and put the ball on the ground a couple times after taking a nasty hit that he was evaluated for at halftime. But he also looked very much in command of the offense, and a couple throws were mere inches from blowing the game wide open. He finished the game 17/29 for 203 yards and 3 touchdowns, along with 9 carries for 28 yards. Once he gets in sync with his receivers and the offense in general, I think he’s going to put up some silly good numbers in a couple contests.
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