As mentioned below, there are several adjustments that can be made according to how the opposition plays the slot receiver. That section focused on the Will linebacker playing in an apex, like in the diagram below.
But what if that Will moves towards the ‘Z’ receiver in the slot position? If he does this, this likely indicates the defense is favoring the pass in this situation. It could also mean two things for coverage.
1) Will staring down the ‘Z’ – Cover 1/0
2) Will staring in the backfield – Zone (likely Cov 3 or a variant)
Running the ISO play to the weakside vs this is obviously a favorable call for the offense, as illustrated in Twins Adjustment Part 1. But what about other plays?
Another favorite of mine is the weakside power or counter play.
This can be tweaked in two ways. If you realize that the Rover, or Sam linebacker is flowing more than illustrated in this play, or if your playside tackle, guard, and the center can account for the playside linebackers, you can have them adjust back a gap to account for these men.
This adjustment to the Power play is really useful for a multitude of reasons that will be explained in a later post. Briefly though, you can attack the defensive structure. If the defense likes to protect that Sam linebacker with a tough nose tackle who is hard to move and therefore hard to combo block, then having the tackle come all the way down on the Sam with the Guard essentially wrapping on the Mike, you can account for these players. This just depends on your philosophy or the defense and their studs.
What other plays can you run against this? Well, running is preferable. Yet a quick slant can be good as well to the X if it is run against loose man coverage.
Here, the offense does fast flow away from the Twins side. This should attract the linebackers. The QB pulls back two steps towards the backs, almost like he opens up for a run. He stops, turns, and reads the X. He should come open if this is man. With the Will likely very concerned with the “Z” (he’s a LB covering a receiver, its man coverage, he’s out of the box), if the X sells a quick move to the outside, gets the corner to over pursue in that direction and he comes underneath, there should be a large running lane for the X.
There are other variations for the Twins adjustment that I will likely come back and talk about, especially its use in the Flexbone attack with a covered receiver.
Remember, always look at the purpose of a formation or what the defense indicates. This is the lesson of this blog. If something doesn’t serve multiple purposes in your offense, is it really useful? Can it be effective in the running and passing game? If not, why use it unless you really only care about running, passing, or perhaps telling the defense exactly what you plan on doing.
The Twins adjustment has many useful purposes in an offense. Use them all and use them all wisely.