Here’s a look at the final projected depth chart heading into the 2019 season.
Starter: Shea Patterson (senior)
Next in line: Dylan McCaffrey (RS sophomore), Joe Milton (RS freshman), Cade McNamara (freshman)
Things are pretty cut and dry here barring an injury between now and the opener. Patterson looked in command of the new offense when we saw him in the spring and there is not much buzz to suggest there has been much of a competition in fall camp outside of coachspeak.
Starter: Tru Wilson (senior)
Next in line: Christian Turner (RS freshman), Zach Charbonnet (freshman), Hassan Haskins (RS freshman), Ben VanSumeren (RS freshman)
This is an incredibly young room heading into this season and many of these guys will be called upon early and there’s a good chance we see a healthy dose of this entire group early this season. For now, Tru Wilson gets the nod at running back because of his previous production and class standing, but Turner flashed some ability in the bowl game and Charbonnet has “come on like a freight train” as Jim Harbaugh put it. Haskins and VanSumeren figure to get some looks at fullback, as well as Ben Mason when the right situation arises.
Starters: Donovan Peoples-Jones (junior), Nico Collins (junior), Mike Sainristil (slot, freshman)
Next in line: Tarik Black (RS sophomore), Ronnie Bell (sophomore), Cornelius Johnson (freshman)
The Wolverines feel great about their wide receiver room heading into the season and feel they have six guys who can really play and do so at a high level. DPJ, Collins and Black have shown themselves to be potential nightmares and Sainristil burst onto the scene in the spring and has not let go of the slot job. Heading into the year, this feels like the two-deep at all three spots.
Starter: Sean McKeon (senior)
Next in like: Nick Eubanks (senior), Mustapha Muhammad (RS freshman), Erick All (freshman), Luke Schoonmaker (RS freshman)
Because of the #SpeedInSpace moniker for Josh Gattis’ offense, we are bound to see a bit more athleticism at the tight end spot moving forward than we have in the past and that could mean big things for someone like Nick Eubanks. McKeon still is somewhat locked in at the top of the depth chart, but expect him to get pushed by the rest of the depth chart. Keep an eye on Erick All, who was another freshman pass catcher that had a nice offseason.
Starters (from left to right): Jon Runyan Jr. (5th year senior), Ben Bredeson (senior), Cesar Ruiz (junior), Michael Onwenu (junior), Jalen Mayfield (RS freshman)
Next in line (from left to right): Ryan Hayes (RS freshman, left or right tackle), Chuck Filiaga (RS sophomore), Stephen Spanellis (RS junior), Andrew Vastardis (RS junior), Joel Honigford (RS sophomore)
The Andrew Stueber injury at right tackle shook things up a bit for the offensive line room, but that starting group should not be all that affected and their depth in the trenches is much improved over the last few seasons. This has a shot to be Harbaugh’s best offensive line at Michigan and one of the best in college football.
Starters: DE Aidan Hutchinson (sophomore), DT Carlo Kemp (senior), DT Donovan Jeter (RS sophomore), DE Mike Danna (5th year senior)
Next in line: DE Kwity Paye (junior), Ben Mason (junior), DT Chris Hinton (freshman), DT Mazi Smith (freshman), DT Michael Dwumfour (senior), DE Luiji Vilain (RS sophomore), DL Taylor Upshaw (RS freshman)
For as much as Michigan lost in Rashan Gary and Chase Winovich, this group is still crazy talented and they could go nine or ten-deep this season here. Danna, a grad transfer from Central Michigan, is seen as a potential early day two NFL Draft pick in 2020 and the hype on him is totally real. Hutchinson showed potential last season and many are expecting a big jump from him. There may be some questions at defensive tackle, but there’s a nice mixture of veterans and youth there and we could see freshmen like Hinton and Smith get into the mix early on. Of the concerns on defense, this does not feel like the biggest one.
Starters: SLB Josh Uche (senior), MLB Josh Ross (junior), VIPER Khaleke Hudson (senior), WLB Devin Gil (RS junior)
Next in line: Cam McGrone (RS freshman), Jordan Anthony (RS sophomore), Jordan Glasgow (senior), Anthony Solomon (freshman), Mike Barrett (RS freshman)
There figures to be a ton of speed once again at the linebacker position, but the concerns about the group are valid after losing a player the caliber of a Devin Bush, who was the No. 10 overall pick in the draft. Ross has the athletic ability to step right in, but can he do all the other things well? Uche is a sleeper pick for Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year and is going to be all over the field, while Hudson looks to return to form after a bit of a down year in 2018. The young guys here are going to get chances to play as well.
Starters: CB Lavert Hill (senior), S Josh Metellus (senior), S Brad Hawkins (junior), CB Vincent Gray (RS freshman)
Next in line: S Daxton Hill (freshman), CB Jaylen Kelly-Powell (junior), S J’Marick Woods (junior), CB Gemon Green (RS freshman), CB DJ Turner (freshman), S German Green (RS freshman)
This is probably the biggest concern on defense, or perhaps even the team. Outside of Lavert Hill, who is an All-American-caliber of player, there’s not a ton of depth at cornerback with Ambry Thomas dealing with colitis. Things look solid at safety with Metellus and Hawkins manning the back end and Dax Hill’s playmaking ability figuring to work in somewhere along the line, probably in the slot. Someone has got to step up here.
Kicker: Jake Moody, (sophomore)
Punter: Will Hart (senior)
Kick returns: Giles Jackson (freshman)
Punt returns: Donovan Peoples-Jones (junior)
Where is Quinn Nordin, you ask? He has been competing with Moody, and there’s a chance he may take kickoffs, but Moody proved last season so much more reliable. The Wolverines play a lot of tough games that require pressure-filled kicks and Nordin has not proven himself capable of handling those situations.