DE Bend and Chase Technique to Defend Zone Read

Jan 2, 2017 | Defense, Game Planning, Defending Specific Offensive Systems and Concepts

By Mike Kuchar
Senior Research Manager
X&O Labs
Twitter: @MikekKuchar



At Villanova University, defensive coordinator Billy Crocker will always make his defensive ends bend and chase players on the quarterback in his 3-3 scheme out of a two-high alignment. “We don’t read with those players,” said Coach Crocker. “We dictate who we want the football to be carried. Plus, when you have less athletic defensive ends defend quarterbacks in this conference, who may be better than them, it could be trouble.” So, instead Coach Crocker will have his defensive end to the side of the back in a cocked stance. He is in a pad-to-pad alignment with leverage on the offensive tackle to maintain C gap leverage. The bending defensive ends cancel the dive component while the Bandit and Outlaw (the two outside linebackers in his scheme) are B gap players. “Once those defensive ends see a veer release, that defensive end is flat off the tackle’s butt. There is no shuffle squeeze technique. We are bending right now to spill the first thing that comes at us. It eliminates any hesitation (Diagram 7).”