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Michigan's 2016 QB Commit Brandon Peters Continues to Back Up the Hype

Our recap of the seventh-ranked passer's performance over the weekend.

Student Sports

As another week unfolded in the Indiana high school football season, future Michigan Wolverine Brandon Peters left no one wondering why he’s the 7th-ranked pocket passer in the country.

Peters stunned fans and reporters alike with a four-touchdown performance, spoiling Senior Night for the Zionsville Eagles along the way. Despite a slow start in the first quarter, the Avon offense was able to right their course and pick up an important road win as the state tournament inches closer.

"We started off slow offensively . . . (but) in the second half we kind of picked it up a little bit and from there we just kept executing our plays," Peters said in a post-game interview.

Swirling winds had a noticeable effect on both quarterbacks early on in the game, forcing several errant throws on each side, but ultimately Peters was able to compensate before the Zionsville defense could adjust to the shift from a run-heavy offense back to the typical volume passing gameplan. Ultimately, there needs to be a quicker adjustment to outside factors like weather if Peters will succeed at the next level, but clearly he’s still a lot farther along than nearly any other quarterback in the state.

Once Peters was able to get a rhythm going again, many of the same bright spots we saw during his nationally televised game on September 11th showed up once more. His accuracy on the deep ball is nothing short of jaw-dropping, his arm strength is phenomenal, and his ability to keep his eyes downfield allows him to find open receivers, often for big gains. He’s an incredibly well-developed quarterback, and one that will surely flourish under a more talented offensive line.

The biggest room for improvement in Peters’ game is going to be his ability to make reads faster in the pocket. Though he’s working with an offensive line that allows him plenty of time to make throws, he’s still waiting longer than he should be for plays to develop. There will be a much higher margin of error when he’s facing Power Five defensive lines, and he’ll need to be able to scan his receivers quicker unless he wants to pick himself up off the ground after each play. This improvement starts with an increased ability to read defenses before the snap, something that Peters has worked on a lot since his junior year, but will surely continue to be a focus as he heads to Ann Arbor in January.

The other part of Peters’ game that demands attention is his tendency to leave his feet while making plays on the ground, something that nearly cost him some playing time on Friday night after an awkward fall in the end zone. He’s a powerful runner, something that will come in handy as plays break down, but an extra three yards simply isn’t worth the risk of injury that is magnified so much on hits in the air. Peters is much larger than many of the defensive players he lines up against, but all it takes is one awkward landing to sideline him for an extended amount of time.

All-in-all, it’s easy to see improvement in Peters’ game, even just from the beginning of the season. He’s a formidable opponent, and opposing defenses have simply had no answer for him thus far in the season. He’s still staying in touch with Coach Harbaugh on a weekly basis and intends to visit Ann Arbor for the Michigan State and Ohio State games, providing two excellent opportunities to get a glimpse of what environment he’ll be experiencing for the next few years at Michigan. Avon will close out the season with a home game against Noblesville before sectionals begin, likely pitting the Orioles up against fellow UM commit Chris Evans (ATH) and the Ben Davis Giants.