Turel's U-M Spring Preview: Quarterbacks

GoBlueWolverine's Josh Turel is going through the Michigan football team, position by position: here are his 2005 Review and 2006 Pre-Spring-Practice Preview. First up, the shallowest of U-M's position groups, Quarterbacks.


#7 Chad Henne, 6'2 Junior
#19 Jason Forcier 6'1 RS Freshman
Fall- David Cone

2005 Review:

Chad Henne had an up and down 2005 season but he had many factors working against him. First and foremost, his receivers were inconsistent and gaining separation and getting open. Jason Avant was his top receiver but still Avant struggled against the press too often. Another problem was timing between the receivers and Henne. Given that the receivers read coverage to determine breaks, and Henne is reading coverage as well, there is a lot of youth in that equation. Henne just did not have the in game timing with the younger group of receivers and he hasn't able to hit them in and out of cuts.

Henne also had his share of blame as well. He struggled early in the season, notably against Notre Dame and Wisconsin where he made a host of bad decisions and his play check offs showed his youth. As the year progressed it was clear Henne became more comfortable and he put together two solid outings against Ohio State and Nebraska. He was more confident in the pocket, showed mobility and made good decisions.

Grade: B-

2006 Spring Preview:

Michigan enters the spring with only two quarterbacks on scholarship. Freshman David Cone will join them in the fall making him the third signal caller on scholarship. With the departure of Matt Gutierrez to Idaho State, Chad Henne now becomes the most valuable player on Michigan's roster. Despite taking some big hits the past two seasons, the young Henne has been incredibly durable. What makes Henne so valuable is there is very little depth behind him. Redshirt freshman Jason Forcier is athletic but has average arm strength and, of course, no game experience. Forcier enters the spring as the number two quarterback and is one play away from being the starter should Henne go down at any point during the season. The goal for Henne this spring should be to improve timing with his receivers, raise his ball carrying position in his dropback as well as tweak his throwing mechanics. I firmly believe that him holding the ball higher will improve his throwing trajectories and ball placement levels. Henne also will have to adapt to new offensive coordinator Mike DeBord, who will change the offense more than most people think. Many around the situation feel very confident about Henne heading into the 2006 campaign.

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