No. 2 Michigan’s first game against a Power 5 opponent this season played out as you might expect — especially when that opponent is Rutgers.

The Scarlet Knights threw the first blow, handing the Wolverines their first deficit of the season in the game’s first minute. Rutgers preceded to stay irritatingly close for the better part of 3 quarters before a backbreaking mistake gave Michigan the breathing room to break away in the final frame.

Thus, for the second straight season Michigan turned an airtight game against the Scarlet Knights at halftime into a laugher by the finish.

Here are 3 takeaways from Michigan’s 31-7 win, which was also coach Jim Harbaugh’s season debut after a 3-game suspension:

Mike Sainristil’s position change has worked out

As if this wasn’t made clear last year, Mike Sainristil again demonstrated why his move from wide receiver to cornerback was a stroke of genius from Jim Harbaugh.

The outcome was still in the balance when Rutgers faced a fourth-and-2 at Michigan’s 27 with less than 5 minutes left in the third quarter. Then the Scarlet Knights called an ill-advised screen pass that Sainristil not only blew up but turned into a game-sealing touchdown for the Wolverines.

The combination of skills Sainristil demonstrated on the play — a cornerback’s eyes and a wide receiver’s hands — will come in handy the rest of the season and in next May’s NFL Draft.

Rutgers is much improved … with a major flaw

The Scarlet Knights are the most improved team in the Big Ten this season. If Rutgers’ campus was on the banks of the Mississippi instead of the banks of the Raritan, they’d be in the hunt for the B1G West title.

Rutgers’ ability to stick with the most physical team in the conference, if not the country, was impressive. A Michigan defense averaging 8 TFL per game — albeit against weak competition — only managed 3 against Rutgers.

But the Scarlet Knights can’t win a game if they are forced to rely on their passing game.

Gavin Wimsatt connected with Christian Dremel for a 69-yard touchdown on the 3rd play of the game. But from that drive forward, he was 9 of 18 for 105 yards and his first interception of the season.

Donovan Edwards is all talk

Michigan running back Donovan Edwards spent the offseason musing about how he would start anywhere but Michigan. And how he and Blake Corum make up the nation’s best backfield tandem.

Might be time for Edwards to update his analysis after another underwhelming showing of 6 carries for 13 yards. Edwards now has 33 carries for 109 yards this season — an average of 3.3 yards per carry.

The Wolverines spoke of getting Edwards more involved this week, and he did have a pair of receptions for 41 yards. But he looks very much like a guy who spent all offseason buying into his own hype.