Archive | April, 2016

Pass Blocking – The Basics

7 Apr

OL OT kick slides (brookenovak)

Pass blocking is an offensive lineman’s toughest challenge. Coaches — and players –must understand that offensive line play is an unnatural task, a skill that is acquired through many hours of hard work and dedication. To be an effective pass blocker, an offensive lineman must take pride and have the confidence in his ability to protect the quarterback. The goal of every pass blocker is to strive to trust their technique. As long as they are sound in their fundamentals and technique it should not matter what the defender does.

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Terminology: Setting the Edge

3 Apr

160403 - the edge and perimeter

Fear of the long run or the long pass dominates the thinking of any defense.  This is especially true on the outside — or perimeter — of a defense where it is the weakest because it is defended by the fewest players.  If a defense has no player there who can “set the edge” against the run, then an offense can run outside for big-time yardage.

There are three areas of a defense that an offense can attack: inside, off-tackle and the outside.  The outside is the weakest because it has the fewest defenders. The “edge” of an offensive formation is the corner formed by the “end man on the line” — that is to say, the last man on each side of the offensive line. This means that every offensive formation has two edges: one to either side.   The “outside” meanwhile is that spacious and sparsely defended area of the field beyond the edge.

160403 - inside, outside, off-tackle (setting the edge)

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Blocking Scheme (Pass): BOB

1 Apr

Big guys on big guys while the running check releases thru the line into a pass route.

BOB or ” Big-on-Big” is a pass protection  scheme generally involving six men – 5 OL and 1 RB – 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 pictures below, big guys are blocking big guys and the running backs are checking for a blitz, but there is none as the linebackers are dropping into coverage.  So, once they see where space in the underneath coverage will develop, they attack the open grass, giving the quarterback a checkdown option should everyone else be covered.


Notice that the running  back (#21)is checking the drops of the linebackers and will release into open grass, while the big guys are occupied blocking big guys..