Off to the NFL: Hutchinson, Ojabo, Hill, Hinton, Ross, Gray, Haskins, Baldwin

Tag: Daylen Baldwin

8Jan 2022
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Off to the NFL: Hutchinson, Ojabo, Hill, Hinton, Ross, Gray, Haskins, Baldwin

Chris Hinton (image via Wolverines Wire)

Michigan football news was overwhelmed this week with guys announcing they were either transferring or leaving for the NFL – oh, and the Jim Harbaugh-to-the-NFL drama – so yours truly just had no chance of keeping up with all those developments.

Posts on each one of these guys will be coming down the road to summarize their careers, but I wanted to address each one here and now.

DE Aidan Hutchinson: Hutchinson played four years at Michigan and could have returned for a fifth. He was the Heisman runner-up and set the school record for sacks with 14. He has nothing else to prove and will likely be a top-5 pick in the draft, so this was the right decision for him.
Draft projection: 1st round

OLB David Ojabo: Ojabo had 11 sacks rushing the quarterback opposite Hutchinson one year after making 1 total tackle. As a redshirt sophomore, he could have come back for a couple more seasons, but he’s striking while the iron is hot. Hutchinson and Ojabo surely helped each other out, and there would be a risk in returning for 2022, considering there’s no proven pass rusher on the opposite side. He could very well have returned and put up mediocre sack numbers, hindering his draft stock. Even though Ojabo is not a good run defender, he does have outstanding athleticism and could be a year one pass rusher for an NFL team.
Draft projection: 1st round

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26Oct 2021
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2021 Michigan vs. Northwestern Awards

Hassan Haskins (image via Detroit Free Press)

Let’s see more of this guy on offense . . . Andrel Anthony. Anthony has better speed than I thought he had coming out of high school, and he showed some playmaking ability on Saturday, squeezing a few yards out of what seemed to be doomed to be a big chunk loss on an end around. Maybe he’s not ready to be a big-time contributor, but I think he should earn a few more snaps.

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4Sep 2021
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Michigan 47, Western Michigan 14

Ronnie Bell (image via Fox 47 News)

Cade McNamara > Joe Milton. Redshirt sophomore Cade McNamara had a game that Joe Milton could only dream of, and that included completing 9/11 passes for 136 yards, 2 touchdowns, and 0 interceptions. It doesn’t matter if you can throw a ball 80 yards if you don’t know where the ball is going. McNamara has the ability to recognize matchups and read defenses, and those skills trump Howitzers for arms. His best two passes of the day were beautiful deep balls to . . .

Ronnie Bell. Bell made a great one-handed catch on the sideline (nullified by a very questionable offensive pass interference call) and a great 76-yard catch-and-run touchdown. That at the end of an exciting 31-yard punt return, he seemed to slump to the ground when getting tackled and was swarmed by medical personnel. When he left the field, he had to be carried and his right leg was just dangling. My fear is that he tore his ACL while making a cut at the end of the run. Bell is a captain, led the team in receiving the past two years, and was bound to lead the team in that category once again in 2021. After losing Aidan Hutchinson, Kwity Paye, and Jalen Mayfield to injury in 2020, it’s frustrating that Michigan couldn’t avoid a serious injury even one game into the season against a MAC opponent.

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25Jul 2021
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2021 Season Countdown: #41b Daylen Baldwin

Daylen Baldwin (image via Twitter)

Name: Daylen Baldwin
210 lbs.
High school:
Waterford (MI) Mott
Wide receiver
Fifth year senior
Jersey number:
Last year:
Baldwin caught 27 passes for 540 yards and 7 touchdowns at Jackson State.
TTB Rating:

NOTE: The transfers and whatnot have thrown off the countdown a little bit, so there will be some A/B situations.

Baldwin transferred to Michigan after a spring season in which he caught 27 passes for 540 yards and 7 touchdowns for a Deion Sanders-led Jackson State program. He led the team in receiving yardage, receiving touchdowns, and yards per catch, and he was tied for #2 on the team in receptions. Originally coming from the metro Detroit area, he played at Morgan State and then Jackson State, so this is his third stop.

I know some Michigan fans got very excited when a 6’3″, 210-pounder committed to the team, but I have some concerns about how well he will fit into the plan for 2021. Two quarterbacks (Cade McNamara and J.J. McCarthy) spent the spring learning the playbook and getting their timing with the already established receivers, and there were no departures from the young receiving crew from 2020. Meanwhile, Baldwin arrived in Ann Arbor after his own spring season, and he has to compete against other talented wideouts now where his combination of size and speed won’t necessarily always win the day. I think Baldwin will get a fair number of snaps this season, but I do not think he will be one of the top three guys.

Prediction: Backup wide receiver