FanPost

Let's Learn Football!! Episode #4

As I have been creating and reading some Fanposts it occurred to me that some of the verbiage and explanations being used might be confusing for some readers. Having knowledge about something will automatically enhance your appreciation for it. Assuming that you are reading this on an NFL team blog, you are obviously interested in football. What better way to enhance your passion for it than learning it on a more in-depth level? While I am not as versed as professional coaches, hopefully I can use my knowledge as a former college player to explain the game in more detail. For this series I will NOT begin breaking down the game from the most basic concepts and rules, but I will start from an average fan's perspective and work into more complex topics. If there is any topic that you feel is interesting, please leave it in the comments and I will try to address it on a future post. I hope you enjoy.

The previous post in this series can be found here.

TOPIC 4:

BASE DEFENSE ALIGNMENTS AND FORMATIONS

4-3 DEFENSE

As we have already covered in a previous post, the 4-3 defense is one of the most common types of BASE DEFENSE consisting of (4) DL, (3) LB, (2)CB, (1) FS and (1) SS. Generally, the four DL consist of 2 interior DT and 2 DE on the edges. You will see the SAM (Strong Side LB) positioned on the same side as the opposing TE either head up or on his outside shoulder, the WILL (weak side LB) playing on the opposite side from the SAM outside the OT and the MIKE (Middle LB) lined up between them. Corners play on the perimeter at regular depth 5-7 yards off the LOS and the safeties are usually shaded over the SAM and Will 10-15 yards off the ball.

Since the 4-3 defense, for the most part, relies on single gap responsibilities, it is best suited to a team with bigger, less athletic IDL. It can manipulate gap responsibilities of the IDL by altering the front calls.