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Pass Blocking: Moves and Countermoves

14 Aug

Former NFL OL Ricky Siglar discusses pass blocking.  A little long winded but some good stuff in there.

Part 1:


Part 2:

Sprint-Out Pass – RB Blocking

31 Jul
It’s about speed and leverage.  Speed to the perimeter and leverage at the edge.

To get there faster — “there” being the outside — many coaches will run their sprint-out to the weakside since that represents the shortest distance to the perimeter.

Weakside and Edge

It’s how we run it and it’s the scheme we most often saw used in our research.

But how you “set the edge” as coaches say — meaning how you leverage the contain defender — will determine if you even get into the perimeter.

At our level the edge is generally occupied by a DE in a wide technique.  He’s purposely set outside to prevent the perimeter from being exploited.   Sealing him off presents a few challenges, especially if he’s taught to widen when attacked.

Wide DE Alignment

If you’re using a Full Zone scheme, you’re basically reaching and sliding on the first step and, if no contact is made, hinging on the second.   But if the DE is still beyond the PST’s reach attempt then many coaches will teach him to get on the DE’s inside hip/number and bench him towards the sideline.

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Blocking the Sprint-Out Pass: Turnback, Hinge and Combination

23 Jul


We’ve done a ton of research on this subject and consulted with various sources and found that coaches favoring the Turnback scheme point to the pressing need to protect the QB’s backside first.  The best way to do this is to slide your OL to the backside.

Essentially Turnback is like Full Zone in that its a zone scheme but flipped to the backside.  According to Mike Pope,  the OL Coach at Wingate University, the OL drop or bucket step towards their backside gap and, using the Gap rule to define their area of responsibility, engage the first defender aligned in their zone or the one trying to cross their face.

Mike, who also doubles as the Camp Director for Hawg Tuff O-Line Camps, says it’s pretty simple but very effective versus stunting and blitzing defenses.

Turnback Protection

True Turnback, we have learned, does not start with a lateral step to the playside followed by a drop step so that the OL’s back is angled away from the playside.  That’s Hinge protection.

Two different terms, two different techniques.

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Blocking the Sprint-Out Pass: Full Zone

15 Jul

In blocking the sprint-out pass, we’re thinking that you should use a scheme that works with your run game.  Its primary goal should be to quickly get the QB beyond contain and into the perimeter where he can threaten the defense.

Full-Zone is one way to block the sprint-out.  So is Turnback.  But the most common way to protect a sprint-out is to Hinge which is routinely called Turnback protection but isn’t.

All are area blocking schemes and all are simple to teach.

Full Zone

“Full Zone” is short-hand.  It means everyone on the line is using zone blocking techniques and stepping laterally in the same direction.  Put more simply, everyone is reaching to the playside.

The most common rule is that each lineman is responsible for the defender in the playside gap between his nose and the shoulder of the adjacent playside lineman.

Zones using Gap Rule

Some coaches, however, will broaden the boundaries of an OL’s zone of responsibility by using a “nose-to-nose” rule.  The linemen block the defender aligned between his nose and the nose of the adjacent playside lineman.

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Sprint Pass – Flood Route (Video)

13 Jul

Here’s a video analysis of a flood concept from an empty set.  A little daring maybe for 12-14 year olds, but a solid concept nonetheless.  We share it because it shows you how to create and attack a void using layered routes and how to create a mismatch between a LB and a speedier receiver.  Good stuff.

Terminology: Big-on-Big

16 Jan

Also know as BOB, Big-on-Big is generally a six-man – 5 OL and 1 RB – pass blocking scheme that pits offensive linemen against defensive linemen.  In other words, big guys on big guys and for the obvious reason: they’re equal in size and strength.

This, in turn, allows the running back to block a defender more his size: a linebacker or defensive back, should they blitz.

Even better, though, when the defense doesn’t blitz, the running back can release into a pass route. This is called a “check release” assignment.  The running back checks first for a blitz before releasing into a short pass route.

In the photos below, big guys are blocking big guys and the running backs are checking for a blitz, but there is none so they’re free to attack any  open grass in the underneath coverage, giving the Quarterback a checkdown option should everyone else be covered.