How To Read Wide Receiver Plays
Learning how to read wide receiver plays can be great for up-and-coming football stars of all ages, but also an essential for football coaches or those looking to become a football coach. This can also help when playing football video games since selecting plays from the playbook often involves terminology the average person may not recognize without knowing the plays. The following are some of the more common wide receiver plays that can be committed to memory for easy recognition.
Wide Receiver Plays
- An "In", "Drag", or "Dig" route. These plays are similar and simply involve the Wide Receiver taking off down the field then turning back at an angle. For the "In" or "Drag" play, the wide receiver runs then comes back toward the center. For a "Dig" play, the Wide Receiver runs only a short distance of a few yards, then turns back at an angle running towards the quarterback, finding an opening.
- An "Out" route. With an "Out" play, the wide receiver lines up, runs a handful of yards then turns at a 90-degree angle and runs "out." If the receiver lined up to the right of the quarterback, he will usually run left when turning at the angle, and vice versa.
- A "Deep Out" route. This is basically the "Out" play but the wide receiver runs about double the distance before turning. Usually about ten yards.
- A "Go" and "Stop & Go" route. A "Go" play is as simple as they come! The wide receiver runs, fast, straight down the field. The goal is to outrun the defensive player(s) covering him and get open to catch the ball. With a "Stop & Go" play, the Wide receiver runs a short distance, turns as if to come back and catch as the quarterback fakes a pass ("pump fake"). Then the wide receiver turns again, and runs down the field fast, like in a "Go" play, thus confusing the defense.
- A "Slant" and "Post" route. A "Slant" route is short and among the more common wide receiver plays so it is usually one people recognize quickly. The wide receiver steps forward then runs at an inward-angle where he will be thrown the ball by the quarterback. In a "Post" play, the route trace resembles a "Slant" but what the receiver does is run deep, then turn at a slight angle, and continue running toward the goal post, with the aim of the play to gain a lot of yards.
- A "Comeback" and "Deep Comeback" route. In a "Comeback" play the wide receiver runs down the field, then turns and starts running back which is when the quarterback will throw, assuming the receiver is open. The ball is caught as the wide receiver runs back toward the quarterback. A "Deep Comeback" play has the wide receiver run deep down the field then either turn at 90 degrees or at a deeper angle running back towards the quarterback. Either way, if he is open, the quarterback will pass to him.
- A "Flag" route: This can be interesting when seen in a playbook or on a video game since the route resembles a lightening bolt shape, in a sense. The wide receiver starts to run down the field, then fakes a "Post" route by taking a sharp turn toward the goal posts, followed by another sharp turn aiming for the corner of the field. The object would be to get the receiver open and in or near the End zone for when the quarterback throws the pass.