Pacstud O-Line Analysis: Terminology Redux

As this is week one, I will begin with a rudimentary explanation of the format I use. I will also explain many of the generic terms used.

Example Play

Let's look at an example play log:
  1. 1-10; 45
    Pro Rt.
    26 Power
    LT-2; LG-1; C-1.5; RG-2; RT-0

Looks like a bit of gibberish, doesn't it? Let's break it down:

1. 1-10; 45
Play#. Down-Distance; Yard Line (a negative denotes Charger side of field)

Pro Rt.
Formation. The formation will only describe the auxiliary personnel as it relates to the offensive line. Therefore, sometimes a tight end (Y) may actually be a receiver. The formations are based on where the "O"s are, not who the "O"s are.

26 Power

Play name. I generally use standard terminology and often simply for ease. In run plays, the first number is the ball carrier (1 = QB, 2 = RB, 3 = FB, 4 = WR) and the second number is the hole. I usually approximate the hole, but even is right and odd is left. The smaller the number, the closer to center. 8 and 9 is for outside runs. On pass pro, a two digit number represents a "regular" protection without PA. the first number represents the number blocking and the second numer (a 1 or 0) represents right or left for RB help. So 50 Pro is a 5 man protection, 60/61 is six man, and so on. A three digit number represents play action. 726 is 26 Power play action with 70 protection, 800 and 900 are boots, and 100/200 are sprint outs (not that we really ever sprint out). Obviously the actual calls are far more complex, but for our purposes this will allow us to analyze the offensive line play with quite a bit of accuracy.

LT-2; LG-1; C-1.5; RG-2; RT-0

I use Milt Tenopir's two point grading scale. I do NOT grade differently based on sacks, penalties, pancakes, or anything else. I grade on the BLOCKING. Too many time a QB can not get sacked even though the blocking was poor, or the QB gets sacked even though the blocking was good. A RB can get a lot of yards with bad blocking, and can get stuffed for a loss due to a TE’s missed block. So the RB’s performance is simply a HORRIBLE correlation to offensive line performance.

A zero represents no block, or a missed block. If the zero block has extenuating circumstances, it is still a zero but I will add an explanation (Dielman has two of these against Chicago).

A one represents either:

  1. The lineman secured one of two blocks required
  2. The lineman secured his block but did not maintain long enough.

A two represents a successfully engaged and completed block.

I will occasionally use a .5 or 1.5 if I feel the block falls somewhere in between.

Formation Terms

  • 22 Gun Lt./Rt.: Shotgun sets. I do not differentiate receiver location as that would require an exponential set of terminology. I use a rudimentary scout system which identifies the number of receivers on either side, reading from left to right. So 22 is a 2 X 2 set with two receivers on both sides. 31 is Trips left and Open Right or three receivers on the left and one on the right…and so on. In Empty looks I will add the "Empty" tag, though one can identify Empty by seeing a 32, 23, 14, or 41 number before Gun.
  • Blue: Two back shotgun sets. Just remember "Blue" means "two".
  • Pro Rt./Lt.: Basic I formation. Pro as a formation refers to a Pro Set. It is an I formation with a FB, tight end, and two receivers. The Rt./Lt. determines tight end (Y) orientation. In single back sets where the FB is removed and there is an extra receiver, the Pro Rt./Lt. describes the side where the Y and Z are. In this case, the other side will almost always be Twins.
  • Twins: Two receiver side
  • Trips: Three receiver side
  • Texas: Two tight end I formation
  • SB: Single Back
  • Ace: Single Back two tight end set
  • Wing: Man outside of Y or H who is not on the LOS
  • LOS: Line of Scrimmage
  • Flanker: Man outside of offensive tackle who is not on the LOS
  • Up: Used with the Y or H when they are in a two point stance. Remember, the Y is determined (for our purposes) by location not personnel.
  • Strong/Weak: Used in Pro sets to describe an offset FB. Strong is to the Y, weak is away.
  • Y: Primary tight end
  • H: Secondary tight end
  • X: On receiver
  • Z: Off receiver
  • Tight: Used to describe receiver(s) who is/are close to the box

OK, this should get you started. Please ask question as we go.

This FanPost was written by a member of the Bolts From The Blue community and does not necessarily reflect the views of the Bolts From The Blue editors or SB Nation.

Log In Sign Up

Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Bolts From The Blue

You must be a member of Bolts From The Blue to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Bolts From The Blue. You should read them.

Join Bolts From The Blue

You must be a member of Bolts From The Blue to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Bolts From The Blue. You should read them.




Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.