Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The Rocket Toss Series

It's a quick-hitter!
After reading Coach B Dud's post on a series based offense, I wanted to give some insight on how to use the Rocket Toss, a normal flexbone staple, as a complete series within that or any offense you employ it with.

Series based offenses work well because coaches can find the defenders who are cheating and take advantage of them with a different play that looks extremely similar. If a defense over commits to the motion man, they can be hit backside with play x. If the LBs fly out with motion, the offense can run play x back inside. All this occurs off the same look.

We get a lot of teams who start out in a quarters look against us and roll coverage towards our motion man by bringing a safety down into the box. Having complementary backside plays works well against teams who over adjust. All these plays are drawn up against a 4-4 look, or what we might see after a team rolls their coverage towards the motion.

1. The Rocket Toss

From a teaching standpoint, this should be the simplest play to run. All the OL follow normal zone rules. Give a quick slotback the ball in space and you have a very easy an effective play. This play has worked well on the goal line when teams are expecting to see inside veer and they get the same motion they see throughout the game. Defenses can easily be caught off guard with a quick hitting, outside play. If your PST has trouble reaching the PSDE, you can have the PSSB chip the outside shoulder before working up to the next level.

PST: Zone step and reach PSDE
PSG: Zone step to PSLB
C: Zone step to N
BSG: Backside cutoff to ILB
BST: Backside cutoff to next interior lineman
Q: Open up to the left and toss the ball to the Z over the tackle, boot out right
F: Block BSDE
H: Block PSOLB
Z: Normal motion to F's butt. Look to catch pitch over tackle.
X: Stalk block CB
Y: Cutoff block to nearest DB

2. The Boot Pass

After giving the illusion of Rocket toss with the motion and fake pitch, the QB boots to his right and has a myriad of options at his disposal. Our QB reads, flat, to drag, to post-corner and then to the dig. He rarely gets to the dig though unless a safety has been occupied by the drag route. The pulling guard attempts to kick out the PSDE and the QB will step up as necessary in this situation.

PST: Slide left
PSG: Slide left
C: Slide left
BSG: Pull right for boot, kick out or log PSDE depending on action
BST: Step inside to protect inside gap
Q: Open up to the left, fake toss and boot to right
F: Flat
H: Draf
Z: Normal motion to F's butt. Carry out motion into flat
X: Backside Dig
Y: Post Corner

3. The Trap

With motion, we sometimes get backers bumping to play side. When we are effective with the Rocket we also get their eyes on the motion man. To counter this, we hit backside with an inside trap. The most difficult aspect of this play is the footwork of the QB, who must open left, fake a toss and handoff back inside to his right. The fullback must deepen a little bit as well to allow the QB time to go through his fake. This quick-hitter can put a defense into a bind when eyes go to motion. It is especially effective if you have ran a heavy dose of midline and the option key (the 3-tech tackle here) has been used to going unblocked. All the sudden, he now gets trapped by a pulling guard!

PST: Block out on PSDE
PSG: Veer release to ILB
C: Block down on N
BSG: Trap block on T
BST: Backside cutoff to ILB
Q: Open up to the left, fake toss and hand off trap to right
F: Trap
H: Backside cutoff on BSDE
Z: Normal motion to F's butt. Carry out motion into flat
X: Stalk block
Y: Stalk block

4. The WR Quick Screen
The footwork for the QB is essential on this play as well, and his ability to deliver a quick and accurate pass out to the WR is a must. Again, the play starts out looking like Rocket. After the QB opens to his left and fakes a toss to the slotback, he will stick his foot in the ground, flip his hips back to the right and throw to the WR, who has taken three steps upfield before retracing his steps and working back downhill. The FB will immediately sprint out and block the corner while the PST and PSG punch a defender (if they are covered) before releasing and picking up the next biggest threats.

PST: Punch PSDE and release to block first threat
PSG: Punch PST and release to block first threat
C: Slide right
BSG: Slide right
BST: Step inside to protect inside gap
Q: Open up to the left, fake toss and throw screen to right
F: Block CB
H: Cutoff block
Z: Normal motion to F's butt. Carry out motion into flat
X: Stalk block
Y: WR Quick Screen

There are plenty of other plays that could fit into this series pretty well. A normal, non-boot play action can take advantage of over zealous force defenders on the second level towards the motion side and fits right into the look of this series. The goal is to make the defense get comfortable and show their hand with one play, so you best know how to attack them with a counter.

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