Projected starter; Ht.; Wt.; Yr.; Hometown
5 | Graham Mertz (above); 6-3; 224; Fr.; Overland Park, Kan.
2 | Chase Wolf; 6-1;197;So.;Cincinnati, Ohio
15 | Danny Vanden Boom; 6-5; 212; Jr.; Kimberly
17 | Jack Coan; 6-3;220; Sr.; Sayville, N.Y. (Injured)
12 | Daniel Wright; 6-8; 215; Fr.; Sergeant Bluff, Iowa
Jack Coan's foot injury in a preseason practice throws a monkey wrench into the plan at the position. The anticipated duel between Coan and heralded recruit Graham Mertz never came to be this offseason as the COVID-19 pandemic wiped out spring practices. But with Coan recovering from surgery, Mertz will have to prepare for a starting role in a modified fall training camp. Coan threw for 2,727 yards and 18 touchdowns last season, but Mertz will likely be asked to generate more offense through the air without star tailback Jonathan Taylor in the backfield to carry the load.
Mertz lives up to the hype and develops a quick bond with his receiving threats, allowing UW to be sharp despite the strange offseason. The running game stays at a high enough level to allow Mertz to utilize play-action — one of the program's strengths — and the offensive line keeps him healthy and upright throughout the condensed season. Mertz's strong arm stretches out defenses and creates space around the field.
The running game takes a step back, Mertz is forced into more obvious passing situations and his lack of experience shines through and results in a stagnant offense. Changes on the offensive line don't work out and Mertz is under pressure often.
8 | Career games played by the Badgers' healthy quarterbacks, none of which were starts.