Attack This Coverage Tuesday

Here’s the situation:

TCU 10 Minnesota 0

3:03 1st Quarter

2nd and 6

Ball on the -21 Middle of the Field

Attack the Coverage

What play do you run to attack this coverage? Why do you run it? What are you hoping the outcome will be?

Leave your thoughts in the comment section below. We can only get better as a coach if we deliberately practice at our craft. This is how we do that.

Comments on Attack This Coverage Tuesday

  1. Coach Hatchett says:

    They’re giving up the flats so I’m going to take it, I would call fade/out and/or curl/flat concept mirrored and let the QB throw to side he like best (which should be the right side in my opinion). All I really wanting with this play is to make it 3 and 2 or 3 and 1 (obviously id take the first too)

  2. Coach Hatchett says:

    They’re giving up the flats so I’m going to take it, I would call fade/out and/or curl/flat concept mirrored and let the QB throw to side he like best (which should be the right side in my opinion). All I really wanting with this play is to make it 3 and 2 or 3 and 1 (obviously id take the first too)

    I’ve been forwarding these things to my HC so that he can play along bc we think this is a great idea and in our conversations about what he both put it crossed my mind that I wonder what everybody else is putting as well. So with that something for you to ponder over, is there a way to allow everybody to see each others ideas and reasoning? Figure that would be another cool learning tool for some.

  3. Gary Banks says:

    Attack the open B Gap…IZ Lock with stick…The QB will read LB as he’s meshing with RB…Once the LB committs throw the stick.

  4. Clint says:

    I’m running a speed option to the offensive right. 2nd and mid yardage gives me the opportunity against this set to set myself up to make the safeties still have to play the pass and expect a play action or maybe even a deep ball because worse case on an incomplete I am still in a manageable 3rd and 6 . By running this to a 1 tech and 9 tech and the safety at 10 yards and a stacked mlb. I have the the play side guard combo block the nose with the center and the slide off the the middle backer and the tackle veer block to the MLB/ or the first thing that shows and read the DE. Man black with the slot and the WR on the Safety and the corner and that leaves you plus one on the numbers to the right without anyone accounting for the RB.

    Should be a big play or a first down or at the very least positive yardage, if for some reason we do not execute the play well, then we should still be set up for a manageable third down on the next play.

  5. Coach Steve says:

    I would run Y stick or Y corner. Could tag an inside zone to that as well. I also think smash or Y cross would be there as well

  6. Anonymous says:

    Fade out to field double slant boundary. Also like earlier post I like qb iso!

  7. Jason Murphy says:

    Just learning about Air Raid terminology so Im not certain of the playcall.

    Boundary wr runs a vert with the slot running an 8 to 10 yard speed out.

    Field side wr runs a post-curl and slot runs a deep cross with an option to go vertical if boundary safety comes up to play the speed out in front of him.

    Running back runs a shoot rte to the field.

    I love the quick, easy reads of this play for young quarterbacks (I Coach 12 and 13 year olds).

    What would his playcall be? Just “Cross”?

  8. CoachCastle says:

    Stick concept to boundary. Throw & catch for the first down. ILB to that side can’t get there by his alignment.
    Also like speed option to boundary because RT has a free release up to playside ILB, C&G can work NG to the backside ILB and WRs have S & CB. Also have numbers to run Q Counter/Dart with RB faking across & blocking wide side DE

  9. Coach Russell says:

    Uncovered rule. #2 into the boundary has no overhang defender. Bubble all day. Get him 1 on 1 with the safety.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Quick or bubble to either side because defense is soft. Or back flair left because backers cant get there

  11. Burt says:

    Bubble screen to the short side of the field. Quick easy throw. CB 7 yards off the ball and S 10 yards deep with the nearest LB lined up all the way over the Center. #1 WR blocks most dangerous between CB & Safety. Slot is then 1 on 1 with the other defender. If he makes him miss its a TD worse case should be a 1st down. Only concern is the super wide DE but shouldn’t be an issue with a catch and throw from the QB. Defense is over shifted to the wide side of the field with a 2 x 2 set IMO

  12. Billy K says:

    Q Iso to the boundary is stealing yards vs that front. If your QB can’t run, run IZ with key screen to #2 to the boundary.

  13. Lane says:

    Speed option to the boundary. We have numbers plus both ILBs are shaded to wide side. Good angles for down blocks.

  14. Coach Vangen says:

    We would call “read” which is our version of the veer play to the boundary. We would read the end and use the RT to pin the linebacker and try to force the next linebacker to go over top. We have RPOs on all of our passing plays and would use the slot to pin the safety a few steps to the outside by having him run a screen. That way if the QB needs an OS route he could potentially flip it. On second and six we feel like this would put us in a pretty good position for 3rd down if we need it.

    In the passing game we might run our sprint out to the boundary with the Z running a 14 to 10 comeback and the slot running the corner route. We rep that more than anything else and the defense is giving that to us.

    1. I’m confused by your “read” play. Is there any way you should email a picture of it to me?

      1. Coach Vangen says:

        Sure–I sent a reply to the email you sent out today.

  15. Gary Tuell says:

    I am going to run pin and pull to the field because they have set the 3 tech on that side. I would RPO the ILB to boundary and run a hitch route behind it/stick. I want to get this to 3 and 2 or less and this is very safe call. Looks like Palms coverage so the hitch should be able to throw in window. I would block with WR’s to the field to ensure the OLB doesn’t cram us.

    1. On I like that play. I like it alot.

  16. Scott says:

    Im running zone triple here. I like this call on second and six for a number of reasons. 1 – It is our bread and butter best play. We major in it and rep it constantly. 2 – The box they are showing is favorable for this play. With that wide technique boundary DE Im assuming we are going to give the ball and I like our numbers and leverage if we do. If we do get a pull read, our boundary slot will be our pitch back…The Will does not look like he is in position to gap replace so hopefully he will get picked up by our backside Tackle. Therefore the pitch key will probably be the safety and if we get a good stalk on the corner we are playing 2 v 1 football.

    1. Are you running the triple to the field or boundary? Are you bringing a wide receiver in motion to be the pitch man? Or are you using a key screen as the pitch phase of your triple?

  17. Brian says:

    Run game: QB Iso, Speed option, QB counter or veer all to the boundary. Attack the open grass. Passing Concepts I like are tunnel, stick or what I call Squeeze. Flash fake the RB to hold ILBs and 5 Dig with #1 and Seam with #2.

    1. I take it you like to run our quarterback. Are you afraid he will get hurt?

      1. Brian says:

        Not no more than other option QB. I do try and limit the touches but do like at least 10-15 called runs a game

    2. Scott says:

      I generally run the IZ to the boundry and the pitch phase to the field. However just because of the way the picture was shown here with the back on the right side of the QB what I was describing was IZ to the field and the pitch phase to the bndry. The pitch man will he the slot on the right – he will essentially take 2 or 3 back pedal steps, then throttle down to get into pitch relationship and then run with the QB

  18. Ernie says:

    MN has strength set opposite RB, push motion the F to right
    that will give us 3v2 on right or a clean read on man/zone coverage

    (if still 3v2 on right) -> throw flat to F

    IZ left, Snag RPO (read the LB that followed F to right side)

    1. Using motion to see what the coverage is. I like it.

  19. Clay says:

    I’ll assume it is 2 read on the backside ala TCU’s Blue coverage: CB & Safety reading #2 and weakside LB is curl/flat. He is way too far inside the box.

    Quick Game – attack curl/flat defender because he is far inside
    – 3 Man: Stick, Snag as noted by others
    – 2 Man: Slants, Levels (can add RB free-release swing/play-action flash fake/RPO reading BSLB)

    Drop Back – becomes man with vertical releases and there is no or little underneath coveage
    – Sail to the boundary (as noted by others) – tag boundary WR with a post so outside WR has more
    grass vs an aggressive safety playing the sail.
    – All Go with boundary outside WR running a Dig; boundary slot is the bender, and free-release the RB to the flat as a check down. OL has the DL and field LB and QB throws hot off boundary LB. Progression: Bender, Dig, Flat

    1. Are you giving you giving your level guy a seam read or a set route? I love the idea of tagging a post to the Sail so that your Sail route has more grass for the catch.

  20. Morris Washington says:

    Pre snap showing 7 in box so no run numbers on front side automatically throwing backside reading safety step down going to outside slugo stay home inside slant as always trying to get positive yardage or score

    1. So you are going slant and go on the backside?

      1. Morris Washington says:


  21. Matthew Friedman says:

    In this situation against this coverage, we’d look to attack the boundary cornerback with our version of Snag. #1-runs a sit route, angling inside to a depth of approximately 6 yards, sitting down before he reaches the ILB. #2-runs a corner route. #3-runs a flare route from the backfield in this case. QB reads the CB to the ILB. If the CB sits, throw the corner away from the Safety. If the CB gains depth, undercutting the corner, QB finds the flat defender (ILB) and reads flare to sit.

    1. You like running snag to the boundary and not the field?

  22. Frank says:

    Pre snap cushion read, the QB may throw immediate Look to one of the slots until defense walks out or puts someone in their tube.
    If defense kept this consistent cushion with no collision post snap….now, bubble, and slants are built into our run game.
    In our passing game our receivers would snap off routes to take advantage if deep shell and open grass.

  23. Johnny Cressell says:

    I would run IZO with the slant arrow tag to the backside. The coverage is bumped enough it would probably be auto pull and a quick dump to the the outside receiver running the two step slant but even if the CB has good coverage on the slant. The quick arrow would open up. No way that safety can roll down fast enough.

    1. What’s your ISO look like? Is it QB ISO?

      1. Johnny Cressell says:

        IZO is Inside Zone with the RB

  24. David says:

    Run Game: QB Dart right (Left Tackle isolates thru PS B gap.

    Pass Game:

    Slot Vertical Choice Route by to the field. Play fake should keep Sam from getting hands on #2, Slot should run the bender.

    I also like slot choice into boundary and would expect slot to run fade. Safety’s alignment is inside giving lots of grass outside/over the top of CB.

    1. Coach,

      I’ve been researching Dart all off season. How do you run it? Is it Dart against Even front and One Back Power against Odd?

      I love the Choice Route.

      Someone has been watching some Baylor film.

  25. Anthony Bogan says:

    I’d use one of the following RPOs: IZ left out Right or IZ left H or X screen. Pre snap there is grass in the boundary and there is six in the box. A fast screen to the Back in the flat. All screens are fair game vs look. Easy pitch and catch. A few drop back passes that are available vs this look in my opinion; Y stick with the back running an arrow route, #2 stick route, #1 streak( mandatory outside release) Streak Hitch. Hitch routes by #1’s and Spacing concept. #2 in the boundary runs an 5 to 7yard O.T.B route ( Over the ball route), #1 in the boundary runs a 5-7 yard spot route in the hole between the CB and Hole player. Back runs a 3 yard arrow route. Backside hitch by #1 and a clear out vertical route by #2. QB progression: Pre snap read: BS Hitch ( Pre snap if there is grass throw the hitch), 1. OTB, 32.Spot route, 4 arrow route..

    1. I love the Y-Stick Concept. Which side would you go with it if you would run it? Into the boundary or the field?

      1. Anthony Bogan says:

        Both to the boundary or the field. Versus this look I would run it to the boundary with the Back in the flat….

  26. @coachjwilson says:

    Probably run Z quick – Y blocks CB, OL runs convey right (wide zone blocking), Aback crosses QB and blocks backside pursuit, QB flashes i/s zone to the left to hold LBs and throws the quick to Z. Backside runs slant-bubble.

    1. I love the quick screen. Do you always have your OL run blocking your quick screens?

      1. @coachjwilson says:

        Game planned. Because its a quick throw, we will convey the OL versus a slower DL rush. Otherwise, we will block it like a regular quick screen…#2 blocks CB, PST pass for a 2 count, clubs and runs down the line.

  27. Desmond says:

    To the bottom – I like slant/wheel. To the top, I like Post-Out. Keep my back in – or have him run a swing route

  28. What play do you run to attack this coverage?

    Versus this defensive structure on 2nd & 6 we will run our version of a spacing concept. #1 WR to the 3 receiver side will run a 12 yard curl, #2 WR will run an 8 yard anchor route (mini curl right in front of the QB), and #3 WR (who happens to be the RB) will run a shoot (flat) route. On the backside, #1 WR (outside) will run a 12 yard curl and #2 will run a seam route to attack the middle of the field.

    Why do you run it?

    With the middle of the field open we are going to try and “Hi/Lo” the Mike LB. If on the snap the two pre-snap ILB’s stay in the box and match the two routes attacking the middle of the field, the QB will progress through his primary progression…Anchor/Seam, PS Curl, PS Flat. If the defense would “Roll” to a 1 high look, the QB would go through their secondary progression…Anchor, Seam, BS Curl.

    We would run this concept in this situation because it is a relatively safe play to attack the open middle of the field, but it also gives our QB the opportunity to throw high percentage passes (curl, flat) if the defense takes away the deep threat.

    What are you hoping the outcome will be?

    Best case scenario…a 79 yard TD pass! We will encourage our QB to not force the first option (anchor/seam) and be happy to settle with the curl or flat. Again, we feel this is a relatively safe concept for our QB, so the expectation is, worse case scenario, we are facing a 3rd & 6.

    1. Why would you run Spacing instead of Y-Stick? What makes you call that play? I’ve been thinking about installing it, but I don’t know what it will give me over Stick and Corner.

      1. We like Space/Seam vs 2 high because we get a “hi/lo” on the Mike linebacker. Plus anytime we get a 2 high look I love to attack the middle of the field with a seam route. The concept has been very effective addition to our passing attack especially when ILB’s want to get out to our Stick and Snag routes on Y Stick and Y Corner. If ILB’s are going to vacate the “box” when we throw we want to burn them with big plays down the middle of the field or down the hashes…

        Our “quick game”, for lack of a better term, is Y Stick, Y Corner, and Y Seam which they all play off each other nicely…Kind of hard to explain, much easier with a visual.

  29. Adam says:

    Speed option to the boundary. #2 WR to boundary gets most dangerous defender and we have a play.

    1. I’ve been thinking about Speed Option. How do you run it?

      1. adam says:

        inside zone opposite. makes for easy install with OL

        1. That’s what I was thinking.

        2. Bryan says:

          I like blocking like power read. I feel better chance to get PSLB With pulling gaurd if 3t to the back. What do you think?

  30. Brian says:

    I’d run either Fade-out to the boundary with a TB spot route to hold the OLB or I’d run Snag to the field with the RB motioning to the field and running and bubble.

    1. Would you release your TB to the field on the Fade/Out or to the boundary?

      1. Brian says:

        I’d release the TB to the field to serve as the bubble/alley influence player and then run our snag concept with the two receivers to the field (i.e. what we call a “hook” route on the outside with a corner on the inside)

  31. Chris Paige says:

    I’d run flood to the back side. Because of how far off the safety is and how far inside the backer is i dont feel like either of them could get to their man fast enough to prevent them from getting the first.

    1. That’s a good idea. How do you run your flood concept?

  32. Dale Carlson says:

    QB Iso-Draw to the boundary with Stick to the boundary. Read the Will LB for the run or Stick throw. If the QB feels boundary S is rolling down presnap he can run and still have the box blocked.

    1. So is the play a pre-snap for the Stick throw? He isn’t reading anyone post snap?

  33. John Butler says:

    Vs. Cover 2. I like the Smash Pass.

    1. How do you run your Smash?

  34. Bryan Carew says:

    QB iso paired with now screen. (QB should throw now screen to boundary)

    1. So the QB is looking for screen pre-snap? If it is there he takes it? If not he runs it? Or is it a post snap thing?

      1. Bryan says:


  35. The playbook is wide open for the run game. According to our pre-snap rules, combined with the down and distance, he should be throwing the bubble to the short side.

    1. What kind of run would you like to run in that situation?

  36. Tyler Hall says:

    I am running a tunnel screen to the right. On the snap, flash fake with RB on OZ/Sweep track and throw the tunnel screen to #1 on the right. #2 releases for the corner, tackle takes one pass step and release for safety, guard goes up to middle backer. C, BSG, and BST take their guy far and wide. It is a high percentage throw that can set up an easier first down on 3rd down and has potential to be a big play. The overhang defender is opposite of the RB which makes the tunnel screen a better option to the right.

    1. Coach,

      I love the tunnel screen. I need to call it more often than I do. When do you think is the best time to call it?

      1. Tyler Hall says:

        I love to call it early in the game to give our QB confidence and see a completed pass. Also like to use it against teams that want to bring pressure early. I really like it on 1st down and using the flash fake with the RB helps get the LB’s away from the tunnel.

        1. That’s a great idea. All the coaches I look up too say that you should call your screens on first and second down. Never on third down.

  37. Josh says:

    Hard to pass up 618 with that open space. Or 91 H shallow, Z Post. Or flood their Weakside of the coverage and go 94.

    1. 618 – aka stick – is a great concept for any defense.

  38. Monte says:

    I’d run a now screen to #2 or a fade/out to the boundary to move the sticks!

    1. Coach,

      So what is your quarterback reading to determine which side to go to?

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