The finger pointing has begun in Ann Arbor after Michigan’s 23-9 loss to Nebraska on Saturday.
The offense has been unable to score touchdowns in its past two games and the rushing attack has not looked stellar either. Fitzgerald Toussaint has been putrid since his arrest in the offseason for operating a vehicle under the influence and coach Brady Hoke does not believe that this incident has anything to do with Fitz’s inability to pick up yards.
Hoke blames his offensive line for Toussaint’s lousy performance this season.
“Fitz ran hard. He took on linebackers, he took on safeties, I was happy how he played,” Hoke told the Detroit Free Press on Monday. “I know one thing, we have to block better on the offensive line. We didn’t finish blocks the way we did the week before. We didn’t score a touchdown the week before either, but we were finishing blocks better. That’s the disappointing thing.”
It’s hard to point a finger solely at the offensive line when Denard Robinson and Thomas Rawls have been able to produce yards and touchdowns.
Toussaint looks like he is missing a step, is misreading his keys and not hitting the holes as hard as he should. I have to attribute that to the fact that he missed starting reps in the offseason because Hoke knew he was not going to start Fitz in the season opener. This was an obvious disciplinary action stemmed from Fitz’s offseason arrest.
In Saturday’s loss to Nebraska, Toussaint carried the ball 15 times for 38 yards. He has 321 yards on the season, far from where he was during his breakout year last season.
If I were Hoke, I would play the hot hand and let Rawls carry the rock until defenses find a way to slow him down. Toussaint must figure this problem out by himself. He has great talents, but does he have the will to perform?
RELATED: Former quarterback, and current wide receiver, Devin Gardner is taking snaps behind center this week for the Wolverines. After Robinson was lost for the game in the first half against Nebraska, Michigan relied on Russell Bellomy’s arm. However, that arm was nothing in comparison to what Gardner’s once was. Do not be surprised if Gardner moves from wide receiver back to quarterback altogether by the end of the season. It makes sense for this offense to transition back to a pro-style offense with Gardner because he is the best pro-style QB on the Wolverines right now. He is my favorite to win the starting job next year, as I do not think incoming freshman Shane Morris will start immediately.