3-4 Dime Personnel Package


See what coaches are learning about this 3-4 Dime Personnel Package – including Video

We are in an age of football where offenses spread the field and want to get players in space. It is essential that defenses adapt so they can limit the number of big plays and points allowed.

The 3-4 is the most versatile of all defenses and this 3-4 dime personnel package gives the defense more speed on the field and the ability to bring pressure or drop 8 into coverage.

The base coverage for this 3-4 dime personnel package is Tampa 2 with a run – thru “Star” that will run to the goalpost at 15 – 22 yards if he sees it is a pass. This package also has the ability to bring a field fire zone and a double edge pressure to keep the offense guessing.

The base call of this package is Tampa 2 with a 3 or 4 man rush. The defensive linemen are two gap players (B gap is the must gap, C gap is the bonus gap) in this call who take the dive and spill all pullers.

The Mike and Star (inside linebackers) are bonus B gap run fitters, but the Star always aligns to the back so he can play the Quarterback on the zone read.

The Safeties are deep ½ players who align on the hash and they are pass first players. The corners are in a cloud position where they are funneling the receiver to the safety and sinking until #2 or #3 come to the flat.

The corners are secondary contain players in the run fit. Below is an example of the alignment:

3-4 dime personnel tampa 2

You could also add an “Easy” stunt where the end pinches and the nose becomes the contain rusher. That is illustrated below:

3-4 dime personnel stunt

You could also blitz the mike and now it turns into a 4-3 Tampa 2. That is illustrated below:

3-4 dime personnel mike blitz

3-4 Dime Personnel Pressure Packages

There are two pressures that are very easy to run and sound against all formations, motions and shifts using the 3-4 dime personnel package.

The first one is a double edge pressure with Tampa 2 behind it. The safeties and corners are playing cover 2, so they will be able to handle 2 or 3 receivers without help from the outside linebacker.

The blitzing outside linebackers are in a “wreck it” technique where they are blowing up any puller and making the ball carrier make a dramatic cut versus a gap scheme play. Versus zone read they are slow playing the cut – back to the quarterback. This concept is illustrated below:

3-4 dime personnel olb blitz

The other zone pressure is a fire zone from the field where the Mike is the contain rusher and the Star is a B gap rusher. The coverage behind it is cover 3, but the rotation is different than your normal fire zone. The safety to the side of the blitz becomes the middle third player and the away side safety becomes your hook / curl dropper. This is illustrated below:

3-4 dime personnel

This 3 – 4 Dime personnel defensive package is simple, sound and multiple enough to handle everything the spread offense throws at a defense. I know it can be hard to visualize these concepts, so I am going to share the film:

Thank you for taking the time to read this article and please do not hesitate to contact me with questions. My email is zach.davis24@gmail.com and my Twitter handle is zachdavis24. May God bless you as you prepare for this next season!