Slot Receivers – The New Full-Back in the NFL


The slot receiver position is becoming the new full-back in the NFL. These players can stretch the defense vertically off of pure speed. Slot receivers are not only incredibly effective, but they are also a valuable part of a team’s offense. Read on to learn more about the slot position. Listed below are a few advantages of playing in the slot. This article is not intended to be a technical analysis of the slot position, but rather a guide to its usage.

Slot receivers are used to stretch the defense vertically off pure speed

Slot receivers are often asked to run the ball, as they can outrun defenders. They can also be used as blocking options on outside runs. These players line up in a slot area, between the outside tackle and the wide receiver. These players can do just about anything on the football field, from catching passes to blitzing the defense. However, they should not be mistaken for a full-time running back.

The slot formation came about when Gillman, a former player at San Diego State, became head coach of the Chargers in 1963. He adapted Gillman’s strategies and invented the slot formation. This formation placed two wide receivers on the weak side of the defense while a running back acted as the third receiver. This formation was effective because it allowed the quarterback to spread the ball to a wide variety of receivers, which caused the defense to be confused.

They are replacing the full-back position in football

With the transition to a pass-happy league, the full-back position has been replaced by a wide variety of options in the slot. Darren Sproles and Larry Fitzgerald, two of the most prolific slot receivers in NFL history, are now retired, while Christian McCaffrey is still active. NFL coaches have crystallized their visions for slot players, and their clones have started to fade.

The slot receiver is smaller, faster, and more mobile than traditional full-backs. The role of the slot receiver is to generate mismatches in the middle of the field between linebackers and defenders. In 2016, Smith averaged 5.64 yards per route run in the slot while Elijah Moore ranked eighth. But unlike their full-back counterparts, slot receivers can still be effective when they line up outside the formation.

They can stretch the defense vertically off pure speed

The Air Raid concept is one of the most effective ways to attack the sidelines using a running back with three levels of stretch. In the Air Raid playbook, the 5-man is known as the “Y,” whereas the Flag route is commonly called the “Sail.” In a traditional playbook, Malzahn’s 5-man would be the “Y.”

Unlike the traditional play action option, the Depot concept pairs an arrow route from the Z-WR with a post route from the X-receiver. This combination puts the defense on notice, as it will not be able to play vanilla zone coverage against the X-receiver. The WR’s post route is capable of coveringt depending on the coverage. And if you use both the Depot and the Flood concepts in one play, your offense will be able to exploit the gaps.