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NFL Media's Lance Zierlein compares Michigan WR Jehu Chesson to Brian Quick.

The 6-foot-3, 183-pound Chesson fell off this season (35-500-2) -- looking like a "shell of his 2015 self," per Zierlein -- after winning the team's MVP award in 2015 (50-764-9). It's possible health played a role. The 6-foot-3, 183-pounder sat out last spring's practices while recovering from a torn PCL. "Erratic quarterback play didn't help his production, but an inability to separate and a noticeable drop in confidence were also culprits," Zierlein wrote. "Has NFL size and ball skills but long speed and play strength are deficiencies that could limit him as a pro. If he can revert back to his 2015 form, he has WR2 or WR3 potential. But at this point, he appears to be a Day 3 pick who could struggle to find snaps early in his career."
Source: NFL.com
Feb 27 - 5:03 PM

An AFC executive says Michigan edge rusher Taco Charlton is a "really, really talented player."

"You won't always see it on every play so that is going to be a coach's job to get that out of him," the exec said. "Rushers with his size and athleticism are hard to find and they usually go very early in the draft." NFL Media's Lance Zierlein compares Charlton to Chandler Jones. "Charlton is an ascending prospect with the size, length, athleticism and pass-rushing potential that NFL general managers dream of," Zierlein wrote. "What you see today might not be what you get. While his production coming out of college will be modest, he could become a substantially better player as a pro if he's committed to the weight room and willing to absorb coaching." The analyst indicates that "high-impact defensive end with all-pro potential" is Charlton's ceiling, while his floor is "solid starter." That's the projection range of a first-round lock.
Source: NFL.com
Feb 27 - 4:15 PM

An AFC director of scouting indicated a belief that Michigan senior TE Jake Butt will improve as a blocker in the NFL.

"He's going to be a good pro. Everyone wants Kelce, Olsen or Gronk but those are elite players," he said. "Butt is dependable and will make first downs. They all get better as blockers once they get up here." NFL Media's Lance Zierlein compares Butt to Zach Miller. "While he's shown ability to operate as an intermediate target as well, he might lack the athleticism and separation to uncover against NFL safeties and some linebackers in man coverage," Zierlein wrote. "Butt must improve greatly as a blocker to reach his potential as a Y tight end. However, his ability as a reliable, productive target should earn him an early starter's nod with a chance to become a solid pro." Butt's junior and senior seasons both ended with Big Ten Conference Tight End of the Year honors (51-654-3 in 2015; 46-546-4 in 2016). Butt is currently rehabbing after suffering a torn right ACL in the Citrus Bowl loss to Florida State.
Source: NFL.com
Feb 27 - 1:10 PM

Pro Football Focus notes that Michigan S Jabrill Peppers is "one of the most difficult evaluations in this draft class because outside of punt returner, he lacks a natural NFL position."

"While many pundits have long been convinced that he is a lock for the first round, his lack of applicable NFL skills makes him a huge risk to be taken so high," writes the PFF analysis crew, "especially considering the high-levels of talent and depth in this draft’s defensive backs." The outlet compares the position-adrift Michigan standout to Jacksonville Jaguars S Johnathan Cyprien, "in large part because it will likely take significant time for him to find his niche in the NFL, and will likely need to play a very specialized role on defense."
Feb 26 - 2:04 PM

Michigan OC Tim Drevno said that he "love[s] [freshman T Ja'Raymond Hall's] foot turnover speed" and his overall athleticism.

"He is a guy that loves the play along the O-Line, and you can see that in the way he is physical at the point of attack," Drevno said. "He recovers well, too. If he gets himself into a bad position, he is able to come out with his top-notch recoverability skills." The 6-foot-5, 280-pounder was something of an under-the-radar recruit for UM this past cycle, but everything is relative with the big dog programs. Hall ranked as ESPN 300's No. 169 overall prospect for the 2017 cycle.
Source: CBS Sports
Feb 25 - 2:06 PM

ESPN's Gerry Hamilton writes that Michigan three-star 2018 DE Aidan Hutchinson is a "high-motor player [who] understands leverage."

Hamilton notes that Hutchinson is "not an explosive player [who] is a blur off the edge," but manages to make up for that lack of overt athleticism via his hustle and football intelligence. The analyst views the 6-foot-4, 227-pounder "[c]an be an effective strong-side end in a four man front, or grow into a five-technique in a three-man front." Hamilton believes this is pretty much a lock-pledge, giving the Wolverines a 99% chance to hang on to his commitment. Rivals recruiting analyst Josh Helmholdt wrote after the Best of the Midwest Combine this past Monday that he had seen noticeable improvement in Hutchinson's game over the past year.
Feb 24 - 6:39 PM

Michigan HC Jim Harbaugh says he's confident that junior T Grant Newsome (knee) will return to the field.

The 6-foot-7, 318-pounder functioned as Michigan's left tackle as a sophomore last season before he suffered a severe leg injury against Wisconsin on Oct. 1. That injury required several surgeries and more than a month in the hospital. When will he return to the field? "Don't know (yet), he's working out every day, he's getting around good, he's making strides," Harbaugh said Tuesday night. "He's as tough as a two-dollar steak and he's (working) with an incredible attitude."
Source: MLive
Feb 22 - 1:36 PM

Michigan received a verbal commitment from three-star 2018 DE Aidan Hutchinson.

Hutchinson was a standout performer at the Best of the Midwest Combine on Monday and subsequently pledged his services to Michigan on Tuesday. He has made marked improvements in his game over the past year, with Rivals recruiting analyst Josh Helmholdt noting that he has worked to fill out his 6-foot-4, 227-pound frame, which has "noticeably helped him at the point of attack." The analyst also believes that he now "looks more explosive." Continued strong work on the offseason camp circuit could help him sneak his way into Rivals' 2018 master list, but for the time being, the outlet does not place him in their top 250 prospects in the current cycle.
Source: mlive.com
Feb 21 - 11:04 PM

Michigan HC Jim Harbaugh confirmed that sophomore TE Devin Asiasi will transfer.

247Sports was on this back at the beginning of February, reporting that Asiasi was hoping to transfer to a West Coast program. The former four-star recruit saw the field for all 13 of Michigan's games last season, but did little on the offensive end, managing just two catches for 18 yards (one of which went for a touchdown) over the course of the season. Still plenty of talent here to mine, though, once the 6-foot-3, 287-pounder settles on his new program. USC and UCLA were both in consideration for his pledge prior to him committing to Michigan.
Feb 21 - 9:48 PM

NFL.com's Albert Breer reports that Michigan will hire former Minnesota Vikings QB coach Scott Turner as an offensive analyst.

Turner is the son of longtime NFL coach Norv Turner. He had worked as the Vikings' quarterbacks coach for the last three seasons and last held a position at the collegiate level when he served as Pitt's wide receivers coach in 2010.
Feb 21 - 6:00 PM

An AFC college scouting director says Michigan S Jabrill Peppers "is a better offensive player than defensive prospect."

"I'm concerned about the lack of interceptions and his lack of physicality," he said. "He is more of a run-and-chase defender to me. He might have a chance as a 4-3 (weakside) linebacker but I believe he might be better with the ball in his hands." A different AFC college scouting director also had concerns about Peppers' NFL positional fit. "He is a box safety or nickel linebacker. He doesn't play well in the back end and is just OK in man coverage. He does have a knack for blitzing and finding the ball in the box. I think you need to have a plan for him because he is good in the return game and he loves playing football. ... I just struggle with him as a defensive player." NFL Media's Bucky Brooks compares Peppers to Eric Weddle, writing: "I believe Peppers' positional flexibility has hurt his value on some draft boards, but astute evaluators and creative defensive minds will appreciate his multi-faceted game as an intriguing chess piece."
Source: NFL.com
Feb 20 - 5:29 PM

Michigan CB Jeremy Clark (knee) received an invitation to the NFL Scouting Combine.

If you don't recall hearing Clark's name too many times this season, that is understandable. He tore his ACL in a late September contest against Penn State and subsequently missed the remainder of the 2016 campaign. Despite the fact that he essentially played no more than a cameo role this past season, the 6-foot-4, 206-pounder will have a chance to prove his rehab to NFL teams later this month. In a healthy 2015 season, he racked up 21 tackles while intercepting a trio of passes.
Source: CBS Sports
Feb 19 - 1:44 PM

Draft Analyst's Tony Pauline writes that if Michigan S Delano Hill impresses during testing at the NFL Scouting Combine, he could see some love on Day 2 of the draft.

Pauline passes along that "Hill has been running laser times under 4.4 seconds and short shuttle times under four seconds flat." The analyst comps him to Boston College S Justin Simmons, who was drafted by the Broncos in Round 3 of the 2016 draft. "Hill is a good football player whose athleticism is in question," Pauline explains, "the same criticisms faced by Simmons a year ago." The 6-foot-1, 215-pounder is coming off a 2016 season in which he logged 50 tackles (4.5 for loss) and three interceptions over the course of 12 games played. He returned one of those picks for a touchdown.
Feb 17 - 6:27 PM

ESPN's Mel Kiper Jr. pegged Michigan S Jabrill Peppers to the New England Patriots with the 32nd overall pick in his latest mock draft.

"Peppers is still a bit of a mystery in terms of projection -- teams are doing a lot of homework and trying to figure out how and where he'll fit," Kiper writes. "But I know a good place [in New England] to land for a player who can do just about anything but just needs a coaching staff that can be creative and use his instincts." The 6-foot, 200-pounder's position is, indeed, a moving target at this point. He will be working out at linebacker come the NFL Scouting Combine later this month, but a December report from MMQB's Emily Kaplan had evaluators nearly unanimously saying that the former Wolverine's best fit with in the NFL will come at safety. It's possible that he will also work out at safety in Indianapolis -- not completely out of the norm for players to see time at two positions during testing and drills.
Feb 16 - 8:45 PM

Michigan led the NCAA with 14 players invited to the NFL Combine.

That's four more than Alabama and LSU -- the next two-highest finishers -- got. The following is a list of Wolverines headed to Indianapolis: OL Ben Braden, TE Jake Butt, DL Taco Charlton, WR Jehu Chesson, CB Jeremy Clark, WR Amara Darboh, LB Ben Gedeon, DL Ryan Glasgow, S Delano Hill, CB Jourdan Lewis, S Jabrill Peppers, RB De'Veon Smith, CB Channing Stribling and DL Chris Wormley.
Source: NFL.com
Feb 15 - 5:45 PM


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