Michigan QB Battle Contenders at BookMaker
It's really hard to see Speight losing this job. We know that he isn't going to be the most talented pivot on this roster, yet he's absolutely a Harbaugh type. He's a big kid at 6-foot-6, and for the most part, he's relatively careful with the football.
That said, even at a price of -400 to start in Week 1, Speight comes with his risks. He made a couple big mistakes against Ohio State, and had that game been won, perhaps we would have been talking about a team in the College Football Playoff.
It's also worth remembering that Speight had a fantastic team around him, one that now has 18 spots that it must fill from last year, many of which were left void from talent that went on to the NFL Draft.
So yes, Speight averaged 7.7 yards per pass attempt and had a good TD/INT ratio at 18/7. Yet he still doesn't feel like a lock to hold onto this job even if he wins it in Week 1.
John O'Korn seems to have fallen out of favor entirely. Last year's backup averaged just 5.1 yards per pass attempt in his 34 attempts, and when he got his chance against Indiana, he didn't look comfortable in the offense at all. Sometimes in the college game, all you get is your one shot, and O'Korn feels like he's never going to get one again after getting beaten out by Speight – and rightfully so – in 2016. There's a reason why he's listed at 50 to 1 to start in Week 1.
Keep an eye on Brandon Peters. Two years ago when he was recruited, Harbaugh compared him to Andrew Luck. The comparison could be apt. This is another one of these big quarterbacks at 6-foot-4, and he's grown into his frame just a bit and bulked up to around 220 pounds. He's not the fastest quarterback out there, but he was an ESPN 300 guy and a legit four-star recruit. For Michigan, he's perfect.
Furthermore, Peters was awesome in Big Blue's spring game, throwing for 160 yards and a touchdown. Most left Ann Arbor that day thinking that Peters legitimately had a shot at wrestling this job away from Speight. He might. That's why he's set at +325 to do so.
Michigan Wolverines Free Picks
The second that Speight leaves this door open for Peters, we know that he's going to barrel right through it. Peters is the quarterback of the future for Harbaugh, and there might be a point that the decision is made that the future is right now.
If we had to guess, Speight will probably ultimately start against Florida in Week 1, if for no other reason than the fact that it's a big game against a nasty defense. That said, we're still going to hitch our wagon to Peters at a somewhat ridiculous price of +325. Just the fact that this battle is still raging on into August and the fact that Harbaugh hasn't just anointed Speight as his starter is telling, and we have a hunch that Peters is at least going to be a live dog in this spot. We won't win this one all the time, but if there's anywhere near a 50/50 chance of Peters ultimately winning the job, we want in on the action.
Bet on current QB Match Up odds at BookMaker: Brandon Peters ( +325 )