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Michigan tight end Zach Gentry discusses backup quarterbacks Brandon Peters and Joe Milton. Angelique S. Chengelis, The Detroit News

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Ann Arbor – Michigan’s quarterback situation suffered a significant blow last Saturday against Penn State when backup Dylan McCaffrey broke his collarbone late in the game.

Behind starter Shea Patterson are Brandon Peters, who started late last season for the Wolverines, and freshman Joe Milton.

“We’ll see this week,” Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh said Monday at his weekly news conference. “Definitely Brandon and Joe will be competing for that spot.”

Harbaugh said he would like to preserve Milton’s redshirt if possible. With the new redshirt rule, freshmen can play in four games and not burn their redshirt. Milton, as Harbaugh said, is eligible to play in three more games.

“Yeah, we’d like to have that,” Harbaugh said of the redshirt. “Don’t know if we’ll be able to.”

Peters started four games last season as a redshirt freshman. He threw for 672 yards and had four touchdowns and two interceptions. He has not had meaningful playing time this year. Harbaugh said he was injured for the season opener at Notre Dame. When Patterson had to leave with leg cramping, McCaffrey was his replacement.

The 6-foot-5 Milton saw the field against Wisconsin and had two carries for 22 yards. Across the board his teammates have said he has a cannon for an arm.

Tight end Zach Gentry said Monday that Peters and Milton have a lot of similarities.

“They’re both mobile,” Gentry said. “Brandon is more mobile than people realize. Joe’s obviously a great athlete. They both have similar throwing styles, similar throwing arms. They both have a big strong arm. I’m not in that room enough to know exactly how that’s going to play out. We’re confident in all those guys.”

Gentry said all the quarterbacks are strong leaders but said each brings a different “presence” to the huddle.

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