Thursday, October 22, 2009

Mailbag question: Thoughts on players

Mailbag question: Thoughts on players

Hello guys,

I would like your thoughts on several players and how they are doing right now and what to expect from them the rest of the year.

The players are Roundtree, Kevin Grady, and Denard.

Also, have you heard anything concerning Boo Boo? Have you heard anything about the status of Gallon, JT Turner, or Cam Gordon (WR still)? And who said he (Cam) was moving to lb?

Tim B.


Thanks for the question.

1) Roundtree: He seemed to have great hands and was a solid overall player when we all saw him in practices. He lacks the size to be a perfect fit at split end (for perimeter blocking and outfighting defenders going deep) and the quickness and explosiveness needed at slot. Still, he can clearly do a little of everything, and even though this system is not based on hybrid receivers, he is of that characterization. As such, Roundtree is doing a nice job as the key back up at both receiver positions. He is performing about like we anticipated. He has been a little bit of a disappointment, but opportunity is needed for success. Once the opportunity arrives it must be quickly seized. The guy caught everything in the spring and now he cannot catch even the easiest passes. He has dropped balls that should have been completions in the past two games.

2) Kevin Grady- He has taken the opportunity to play for the injured Moundros and ran with it quite well. Kevin’s blocking is noticeably improved and he is doing a nice job with ball security. Still, Kevin needs to lower those pads and take on tacklers closer to the apex of balance and center of gravity (just below the xiphoid process, that is, just below the breastbone). We expect to see more of him in the I-formation.

3) Denard- First off, he is being used and his performance level is about like we expected. Denard’s skills make for a great change up and he is the type of player defenses need to be aware of every single play. By this time next year we will be talking about Denard as the most improved player on the team and wait until he has a spring practice regimen under his belt. We do not believe he will be moved to split end, or slot receiver, because as we have discussed for quite some time, Coach Magee very much likes a player like Denard at quarterback.

Next spring, we hope Tate learns how to stay in the pocket. He will make limited progress and overall improvement until he achieves this goal, and he probably will. If not, Denard will overtake him, in our opinion.

4) Nothing new on Boo Boo, except that he has a long way to go to get back in the good graces with the team and shores up other aspects. He needs to improve his attitude, both on and off the field, and take to coaching much better. The biggest thing though, quit pouting, so basically Boo Boo is starting over.

5) Gallon- Jeremy is showing great athletic ability and obviously he is still learning a new position. He also needs to add weight and get stronger. Gallon looks very good in practice and by next year we fully expect him to be in the mix. Gallon, Jones, and Hawthorne (the Florida kids) all have great work ethic.

6) JT Turner- getting into school late hurt him, but there is no denying the talent and Turner is going to be great. We think he ends up at safety next year, and starts. We guess this likely depends on what Warren does (leave or stay). But right now, we fully expect Woolfolk to stay at CB.

7) Cam Gordon- The last we heard Cam was still playing split end. We believe, at least short-term, he will not be moving to linebacker like others predicted not that long ago. Gordon is not moving and if he works hard this off-season, Cam could be in the two-deep next year. He has been impressive in practice. He is physical and he catches the ball over the middle.

UM needs wide receivers that know how to respond to Tate when he scrambles. We expect this improvisational ability will improve with time. Our wide receivers are basically statues (or deer in headlights?) when Tate moves.

Thanks for stopping by Go Blue Michigan Wolverine
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Written by CoachBt, MaizeMan, Doc4blu, and ErocWolverine

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