2020 Season Countdown: #16 Joe Milton

Tag: Joe Milton

29Sep 2020
Blog, homepage 36 comments

2020 Season Countdown: #16 Joe Milton

Joe Milton

Name: Joe Milton
243 lbs.
High school: 
Olympia (FL) Olympia
Redshirt sophomore
Jersey number: 
Last year: 
I ranked Milton #55 and said he would be a backup quarterback (LINK). He completed 3/7 passes for 59 yards, 1 touchdown, and 1 interception; he also ran 5 times for 16 yards and 1 touchdown.
TTB Rating:


Yeah, I didn’t have Milton pegged as the starting quarterback. This countdown was put together long before Dylan McCaffrey opted out and planned to transfer. This is a pretty high ranking for a backup quarterback, largely because McCaffrey hasn’t made it through a season healthy.

It’s a low ranking for a starter.

I’ve overanalyzed Milton to the point of exhaustion (LINK), and obviously my interpretation of the quarterback battle did not mesh with the coaching staff’s. Milton has looked jittery and made poor decisions at almost every opportunity so far in his college career, and the only area where he looks like a plus player is in the run game. Even some of his completions have come when throwing jump balls into double coverage to Nico Collins, making guys dive to catch slants, etc.

On the plus side, Milton is absolutely an enticing athlete with very impressive arm strength and above average speed. Some people – including Devin Gardner, who worked with Milton in the off-season – have said Milton is Cam Newton-like in his physcality. And Milton has a stronger arm than Newton.

If Milton made tremendous strides in the off-season, then he certainly could have overtaken McCaffrey, who had his own struggles. But buying into that notion requires us to suspend what we saw on the field and believe in word trickling out of workouts. And we all know that off-season hype is overblown more often than not.

All that being said, Milton is now The Man. The hope is that he is a difference-maker from the quarterback position, something Michigan has not really had in many years. Denard Robinson was a difference-maker with his feet but struggled as a passer. Devin Gardner had a few games where he looked like a superstar, but that was not consistent.

I expect inconsistency, because that’s what we’ve seen so far. Milton has been inaccurate, and I go to the School of Mike Leach, who believes you’re either accurate or you’re not. I don’t expect Milton to start completed 65% or 67% of his passes, but if he can be around 61-62%, hit some deep balls, and make plays with his feet, Michigan could be in business.

Prediction: Starting quarterback

6Aug 2020
Blog, homepage 15 comments

Snapshots: Joe Milton vs. 2019 Opponents

Joe Milton (image via Wolverines Wire)

I have previously broken down Dylan McCaffrey as I evaluate the 2020 quarterback battle (HERE and HERE).

Now here’s a look at Joe Milton’s performance against a few opponents in blowouts. It’s important to keep in mind that Milton was often working with backups, and practice reps for the #3 guy are limited.

As a reminder, I awarded grades on the following scale:

  • +1: Good play that not everyone can make
  • 0: Average play that an average player can make
  • -1: Poor play

Click on the play number for the YouTube link.

PLAY 1: The line doesn’t do Milton any favors – especially right guard Griffin Korican, who allows pressure that prevents Milton from stepping up – but a quick throw on an arrow route gets batted down as Milton tries to throw it through the defensive end.
Milton grade: -1

Hit the jump for the rest.

read more
29May 2020
Blog, homepage 5 comments

Can Joe Milton go from 3rd to 1st?

Joe Milton (image via Wolverines Wire)

Much has been made of the 2020 quarterback battle between Dylan McCaffrey and Joe Milton. I did a post analyzing McCaffrey (LINK) and plan to do more, but in an effort to handicap the race, I wondered how many Michigan quarterbacks have taken over the starting job after being the #3 (or lower) in the previous season, or ever.

Hit the jump for the rest of the post.

read more
18Apr 2020
Blog, homepage 21 comments

Mailbag: J.T. Daniels and transfer quarterbacks

J.T. Daniels (image via SI)

Hey, Magnus. I appreciate your comments here and over at MGo. I was wondering what you think about JT Daniels and if Michigan should go after him. I know Michigan recruited him back in high school, but Michigan hasn’t had luck with transfers in the past. Is it worth the risk of chasing off D-Caff, Milton, and potentially JJ McCarthy? I’ll hang up and listen.

Hit the jump for my response.

read more
3Jan 2020
Blog, homepage 24 comments

Change is Coming: Offense

Ben Bredeson (image via 247 Sports)

Every year the new season brings changes big and small. It seems that the 2020 season will bring some pretty significant changes to what we see on the field at Michigan, from players to coaches. Here’s a look at the expected changes and what we might see in 2020.

The impact is rated as being positive (+), negative (-), or neutral (=).

Out: QB Shea Patterson
In: Dylan McCaffrey/Joe Milton
Patterson was just the third quarterback to throw for 3,000 yards in a season, but many weren’t happy with his performance. Redshirt junior McCaffrey and redshirt sophomore Joe Milton will battle it out, and the belief (on my end) is that the loser of that battle will not finish out his career at Michigan. McCaffrey is the better overall player – both passing and running – but a concussion and a collarbone injury have ended his previous two seasons.
Impact: =

Hit the jump for more.

read more