The Shotgun Play and The Slant

What to do when you’re facing a superior team?

As coaches we all hate to admit it, but sometimes you face an opponent that is superior to your team in size, conditioning, or speed and what you do as a coach can mean the difference between success and a total blowout. Below you will read about two great plays to implement in situations like this: The Shotgun Play and the Slant.

The first thing as a coach when you realize that the deck is stacked in the opponent’s favor is to acknowledge you and your team’s shortcomings and make a game plan to make up for it. If your team is at a size disadvantage, which is more common in the high school level, use game plays that involve a lot of high speed and a high motor offense like the Shotgun Play. This is a fairly regular and basic play but its versatility makes it an essential play in your game book.

The Shotgun Play and The Slant

The Shotgun play is when the quarterback drops back and the receivers spread out in all directions while progressively going up the field toward the end zone. As soon as there is an open receiver spotted, the quarterback immediately throws to the player. This play should be done with extreme speed because it accounts for a minimal time for an open pocket. The reason this is a good play for teams with a size disadvantage is because of the relatively little time the offensive line has to hold back the defense. When facing a larger team your offense will most likely be unable to contain the defense for long because of lack strength or overwhelming size. It’s an ideal play because it’s quick, easy, efficient, and will reduce fatigue on your players.

The other key play that can be useful in your playbook during a tough game is using The Slant. The Slant is as simple to play as it sounds. The quarterback falls back as the ball is snapped while the offensive line pushes to the defense to the side in unison. The receiver then takes the hand-off and runs in the opposite direction that the defense is being pushed. This allows the offense to compensate for any size, strength, or speed deficiencies as they will not be taking the defense head on but redirecting them in a different direction. It also allows a large gap for the receiver to run threw. The catch is that the receiver must have the speed and skill to not get trapped as the defensive swarms the side of the field he is running and get pushed out of bounds before he can gain yardage.

Looking for a good play to attack Sideline to Sideline? Check the Dodger Formation.

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