Disguising the I Formation Iso Play: Fullback Swipe


It’s important, that we as coaches, recognize ways to earn little victories in order to help our players be successful by aiding them in their opportunity to win match-ups. It’s a myth that the fullback in the I formation must be a bruiser (along with the idea that the tight end must be a man among boys). With small enhancements to the I formation, an undersized/under powered fullback can still be effective. The Swipe action on the the I formation iso play helps put the fullback in a position to be successful.

I formation Iso Play Swipe Concept

So what is the I formation Iso Swipe concept? I call it the “swipe” because essentially the fullback is pulling from an off-set position opposite the play to kickout the inside linebacker. I call it swipe because it’s not quite a pull or a wrap technique. The fullback works into the line of scrimmage, and should expect to kickout the linebacker. Essentially, everything is the same from your standard I formation Iso play, except that you are “swiping” with the fullback instead of “leading” up on him.

Fullback kicks out playside inside linebacker, combo gets dumped but accounts for nose tackle and weak inside linebacker.

What the I formation iso play swipe concept does is it essentially provides a really appetizing read to the Middle Linebacker. He gets an open door and sees the tailback coming right at him. It looks like a broken play, or Inside Zone with a combo on the shade. The linebacker presses the line, either looking to make a big play in the backfield, or to beat the combo block, and gets kicked out by the fullback coming underneath.

I Formation Iso Play: Swipe Technique

The fullback should come underneath the quarterback. He will not likely make the block on the other side of the line of scrimmage. If he does, it won’t be very deep. He should anticipate movement on nose tackles thanks to the combination block. He should use a blocking technique to a trap block. He should keep his head up the field, and kickout with his playside shoulder pad. He should use surface by using the flipper, and run his feet on contact.

The tailback wants to open like it’s a normal Iso play. This will get the playside inside linebacker to step up. The tailback should be ready to hug the combination block on the nose tackle.

The quarterback should make sure he doesn’t step off the midline as he reverse pivots to the tailback. If he steps off the midline, he risks forcing the tailback into the kickout on the linebacker. He should carry out whatever your typical play fake is.

I Formation Iso Play: Swipe Play Action

This run action actually works really well with any type of half-slide protection. The offensive line slides away from the call, with the playside tackle setting up on the end. The fullback, instead of kicking out, would sneak into the flat. The tailback is responsible for the linebacker tackling him (aka, playside inside). From there, the play is really up to the offensive coordinator. I always like Post/dig or Pound Pass (TE sits at 8-10, works off leverage of safety, and the flanker runs a post over the top) play action pass concept when the QB can setup right behind the tackle, so this play action works beautifully.