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Old 04-02-2007, 08:59 AM    (permalink
Star Wideout
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Default Advanced Football Questions (NFL QB Play)

I don't know where to put this but I'll post it here. I have a few advanced questions regarding Quarterback play on the NFL level. I don't expect the average football fan to know the answers but maybe there are a few people with advanced football knowledge.

1.) What does a Quarterback look for in Defenses pre-snap? I think one of the things he looks for is the depth of the Safeties, how deep they are and how far apart from each other they are. Do they also need to look at the Cornerback's alignment? For instance if they are in a squat stance to play press, or bail coverage. Or if they are in a 2 point stand up stance to play slide technique or off coverage?

Do they have to mix up their snap cadences to try and see which Defenders are blitzing and from where, and expose disguised coverages? and then adjust his pass protection calls accordingly. What else does a QB need to look for before the snap?

2.) What determines how a QB goes through his progressions? What does he look for when he goes through his reads? Is he looking for certain types of coverages, weak points in zones? Is he looking for a certain degree of separation from Defenders?

What makes him pull the trigger on his read? and what determines if he needs to move onto the next progression?

Thanks for any help.
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Old 04-02-2007, 10:05 AM    (permalink
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Play Madden at All-Madden. You tend to pick up on these things naturally. No joke.
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Old 04-02-2007, 10:11 AM    (permalink
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Originally Posted by Star Wideout View Post
I don't know where to put this but I'll post it here. I have a few advanced questions regarding Quarterback play on the NFL level. I don't expect the average football fan to know the answers but maybe there are a few people with advanced football knowledge.

1.) What does a Quarterback look for in Defenses pre-snap? I think one of the things he looks for is the depth of the Safeties, how deep they are and how far apart from each other they are. Do they also need to look at the Cornerback's alignment? For instance if they are in a squat stance to play press, or bail coverage. Or if they are in a 2 point stand up stance to play slide technique or off coverage?

Do they have to mix up their snap cadences to try and see which Defenders are blitzing and from where, and expose disguised coverages? and then adjust his pass protection calls accordingly. What else does a QB need to look for before the snap?

2.) What determines how a QB goes through his progressions? What does he look for when he goes through his reads? Is he looking for certain types of coverages, weak points in zones? Is he looking for a certain degree of separation from Defenders?

What makes him pull the trigger on his read? and what determines if he needs to move onto the next progression?

Thanks for any help.

1. Yes, usually the first thing a quarterback looks for is the saftey depth. He will also look for potential blitzers and call the out to his line. He will usually also try to determine what type of coverage the defense is using.

2. THe play callde out has a progression in it. Basically, if the first reciver is going on a go route and the saftey drops back (or the linebackers play zone as the recievers go over the middle, anything like that) He will go to his second read. Some routes are merely decoys and are used to clear routes for other recivers and arent really part of the progression (unless as a last resort.)

yea, and the ghuy wasnt kidding about madden either
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Old 04-02-2007, 10:22 AM    (permalink
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Play Madden at All-Madden. You tend to pick up on these things naturally. No joke.
I agree..!! I been playing Madden for like 15 years and I swear if I had a decent arm I would of been a stud in the NFL!!
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Old 04-02-2007, 10:22 AM    (permalink
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also: i hate anyone who thinks madden actually teaches you much of anything about actually playing a position or the theory behind it.
madden teaches you about making presnap reads, If the safety is playing in the box, them im throwing it to Chad Johnson deep. Im not sayin that it is realistic, or anything like that. It doesnt teach you theory, but its a kick ass game and it does help your understanding of football a bit.
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Old 04-02-2007, 10:48 AM    (permalink
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i wish we still had the eye roll smiley.
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Old 04-02-2007, 10:49 AM    (permalink
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i wish we still had the eye roll smiley.
Where's the one you stole from the Jews? (as if they hadn't been through enough, already...)
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Old 04-02-2007, 10:51 AM    (permalink
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1. The QB tries to gauge by the alignment what coverage the D might be in, based on safety depth and width, and also as you said if the corner's are at the line, 7 yards off, shading inside or outside and the like. They also try to see if the Defense is blitzing, which calls for a hot read on both the QB and WR parts many times. QB's such as Peyton and Brady love to go back as if they are receiving the snap in shotgun, and even do the leg kick as if they are ready for the ball to be snapped, but then walk up to the line and call adjustments based on how the defense moved when they did the initial faux snap thing. The hope is that by going back and acting as if they are ready to snap the ball the defense will show what they are going to do.

2. As someone mentioned often times a play calls for a #1 option, but at times the pre-snap read will give the QB an idea of who the #1 option will be, especially when the defense is heavily blitzing. Sometimes the play calls for the read of a single player on defense. So for instance if you have a player running a deep in and a player running a post over the top you read the safety. If the safety covers the deep in you go over the top with the post, but if he covers the post you probably hit the deep in. But of course it just isn't as simple as that because a linebacker could be dropping to cover the deep in and you might have to hit a shallow crossing route and the like. It's really complex at times but really simple at times. Often pre-snap reads give a QB a pretty good idea of if the D is in man or zone, and motion often shows the QB that. If the CB are following the receivers than its obviously man. But a QB and his receivers have to also try and see if they are in zone if they are going cover 2(2 deep safeties who each have a half of the field deep as their zone), cover 3(2 deep safeties and 1 deep corner who each have a third of the field deep as their zone), or even cover 4(often only used on 3rd and long, which gives the 2 safeties and 2 corners who each have a deep quarter as their zone). And for each pass play the QB knows the best option against man and the best against zone, and the receivers adjust the routes based on the coverage they are getting. If you are running a deep in against man you keep going unless the quarterback rolls out of the pocket in the other direction, but if it is zone you sit in a pocket of that zone and float as the zone floats. I don't even know if that helped, but I hope it did a bit.
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Old 04-02-2007, 11:04 AM    (permalink
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I'm guessing you guys never played quarterback at any level. Madden offense are more basic than most high school offenses. I know for a fact that the offense was more basic than my high school offense at least. The defense is even worse. Defenses in Madden are horrible.

2. Just about every play the receivers have a choice in which route to run. So, Ill use the Packers as an example. (A very basic example.)

Driver is split out far left with Franks lined up TE on the left. Jennings is split out right. Henderson and Green are lined up in the backfield. Driver has a choice to do a post, fade, or hitch. It will all depend on what the corner does. If he is in press, he will do either the post or the fade, depending which the corner gives him(9 times out of 10 the corner will give him the outside, so he will do the fade.) Franks will read the line backer and either do a crossing route or a seam, most likely a crossing route. Jennings will be almost a decoy, so he will be clearing, again either a deep post or a fade. Henderson and Green will stay in and pick up a blitzer, if none come they will flair out to the flats.

The progression would go Driver(you would hit him right away on the hitch if the corner is playing a bail technique.) If he runs deep and the safety is in position, you would check off of him down to Franks. If Franks does a seam you throw to him if he is able to beat the backer and the safety is helping over the top on Driver. If he does the crossing route, you will throw it to him as he passes the tackle on the right side of the defense, if he is underneath or over the top of the backers, depending on the depth the route was supposed to be. Jennings is the third option, and you would only throw to him if he is open on the deep route. Then you would check down to whichever of your backs didn't have to pick up a blitzing backer. If the SAM backer is blitzing, franks will immediately cut his route short and be a hot route. But I don't have too much time to get into that, I have to get to school.

Again, this is a very basic description. There are obviously a lot more reads to make, but many of those will be presnap. Most answers you will get in this thread will be ********. Most people have absolutely no clue when it comes to quarterbacks. If you want a REALLY in depth explanation, your best bet will be to wait for BBD. But I'm not sure how much quarterback he knows, his best area seems to be defenses.
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Old 04-02-2007, 11:07 AM    (permalink
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The post directly above mine is a pretty good description of what is going on.
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Old 04-02-2007, 11:43 AM    (permalink
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Alright thanks a lot of insightful responses so far.

It seems like you need great mental capacity, and have to be an extremely efficient decision maker to be an effective QB at the next level.

Particularly because of the sheer amount of reads a QB has to go through on any given play especially with the ussually short amount of time he has a window to make the decision in with 300 lb Defensive ends charging at you.

so from what I'm hearing there seems to be a lot more Option routes for receivers in NFL Offenses, depending on what coverage is being played.

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Old 04-02-2007, 11:49 AM    (permalink
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i'm far too lazy to keep finding it and copying it over.
Put it in your sig, seriously.
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Old 04-02-2007, 04:55 PM    (permalink
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also: i hate anyone who thinks madden actually teaches you much of anything about actually playing a position or the theory behind it.
Dude are you kidding? In all-madden you hella hafta use motion to detect man or zone coverage, throw the ball at the right time, find the potential blitzers, see whether the safety is playing close to the line or if he is in man or if he is in his normal position, hot route your recievers accordingly.

Granted its just a video game...you wont learn as much as you would by playing the position, watching tape, etc...but it still does teach a fair amount while still being fun to play.
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Old 04-02-2007, 05:04 PM    (permalink
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It doesn't even teach you what playing one day at the high school level would teach you. Madden is incredibly simplistic. I was a QB throughout high school(back up, I started at safety.) Madden did absolutely nothing to help. One day of 7on7 would do more to read coverages than hours and hours of playing Madden.

I'm starting to doubt that some of you have ever even played football. Madden does just about nothing to help real life football what so ever.
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Old 04-02-2007, 05:07 PM    (permalink
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This past year in football when I would go under center on a passing play I would locate the LB or S depending on the what routes were going to be run. If it was shorter routes on the same side I just dropped back on threw it to the man that the LB didn't go for and left in the flat or middle. On deeper routes I would give a pump fake on a route like a out and up or if there was a deep route one side and a shorter route on the other I would look away from the intended target to get the safety to move over and then I had one on one coverage on the side where I was going to throw.
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Old 04-02-2007, 05:33 PM    (permalink
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I don't know where to put this but I'll post it here. I have a few advanced questions regarding Quarterback play on the NFL level. I don't expect the average football fan to know the answers but maybe there are a few people with advanced football knowledge.

1.) What does a Quarterback look for in Defenses pre-snap? I think one of the things he looks for is the depth of the Safeties, how deep they are and how far apart from each other they are. Do they also need to look at the Cornerback's alignment? For instance if they are in a squat stance to play press, or bail coverage. Or if they are in a 2 point stand up stance to play slide technique or off coverage?

Do they have to mix up their snap cadences to try and see which Defenders are blitzing and from where, and expose disguised coverages? and then adjust his pass protection calls accordingly. What else does a QB need to look for before the snap?

2.) What determines how a QB goes through his progressions? What does he look for when he goes through his reads? Is he looking for certain types of coverages, weak points in zones? Is he looking for a certain degree of separation from Defenders?

What makes him pull the trigger on his read? and what determines if he needs to move onto the next progression?

Thanks for any help.


This is a mouthful, I'll see how much I can get into. Theres SO much to discuss.

Ok, first and foremost, it depends on the scheme. Let's consider the 4-3 scheme for simplicity sake, because the 3-4 can get very complicated.


First you look at the dline. The dline is a good indication of what you expect as far as pass rush. If everyone is one gapping, chances are youre only getting front 4 pressure. If someone is 2 gapping, depending on when and where, there could be a blitz.

Theres 2 ways of deciphering this. First, you use motions to see if its man coverage or zone. 2nd, you mix up your count to see who jumps early out of the LB position. That let's you know where the blitz is coming from, and what kind of blitz it is. Also, the stance of the LBs is an indication. If theyre in a rushing stance, chances are theyre blitzing. If theyre in a 2 point stance, theyre more likely in coverage.

Now, the secondary. You need to see how far the safeties are playing. Observe the coverage by the CBs, if its bump and run, etc. Again, use motion to see if its man or zone.

After the hike, the first thing you do is read the defense. You should know your routes, and by reading the defense, you'll know instantly which route to hit because each defensive scheme is vulnerable to something, so by reading the defense properly you can make your hot read quickly and get the ball to that person. Its not about hitting the open man, its about hitting the right wndow. No one is open in the NFL for more than 1 second, you gotta hit them at the right time. And you usually do that by reading the defense.

Now, also, remember, you can't just read the defense and hit the target. Defenses are too fast and will pick you off. You have to trick defenders in coverage. So you have to look off defenders and sell the play one way while going the other way.

Thats a basic overview. Of course it can get much more complex, but thats the basics of it. Its not an easy position to play.

Of course, its not as simple as Ive said. Zone defense can be very complex, and defenses do a very good job disguising their coverage. Alot of times they line up in man and drop into zones etc. So motioning isn't always an accurate indication.

I can get real detailed but its far too complex of a topic. So much changes during the play, its nothing like Madden.
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Old 04-02-2007, 05:36 PM    (permalink
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in real life i can't count on the cb's AI to suck completely.
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Old 04-02-2007, 05:54 PM    (permalink
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Heh, believe me, playing Madden is A LOT easier in reading coverages and the blitz. Mainly due to the fact it's not first person and you're not limited in your vision. Trying to read the defense with five 6 foot something linemen infront of you (along with the Defensive line and any blitzers) and with your face mask and helmet blocking some of your vision can be extremely difficult.

It can give you a very BASIC knowledge of what a Cover 2, Cover 3 and so on looks like and is used for. Other than that, relying on Madden to teach you how to effectively make your reads, adjust protection, know who your hot route receiver, is about as smart as flying a commercial jet based off playing Microsoft Flight Simulator.

I can unforunately assure you of this having played quarterback for four years in high school. Was the worst posistion by far I'd ever had a chance to play at. Had only played receiver and free safety before it though. Now those two posistions were fun..
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Old 04-02-2007, 09:04 PM    (permalink
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My post about being a "stud in the NFL" was a joke...Playing Madden won't make you a better QB if you aready been coached, but like it or not it does give you a simple idea of how a QB reads... All these so called expert who posted what a NFL QB goes through reading a covage bisically wrote a simple strategy guide for Madden... Try playing Madden on the hardest setting and you'll see that the AI isn't so stupid and you'll end up useing everything you know about reading covage to be successful at the game...
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Old 04-02-2007, 09:23 PM    (permalink
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Heh, believe me, playing Madden is A LOT easier in reading coverages and the blitz. Mainly due to the fact it's not first person and you're not limited in your vision. Trying to read the defense with five 6 foot something linemen infront of you (along with the Defensive line and any blitzers) and with your face mask and helmet blocking some of your vision can be extremely difficult.

It can give you a very BASIC knowledge of what a Cover 2, Cover 3 and so on looks like and is used for. Other than that, relying on Madden to teach you how to effectively make your reads, adjust protection, know who your hot route receiver, is about as smart as flying a commercial jet based off playing Microsoft Flight Simulator.

I can unforunately assure you of this having played quarterback for four years in high school. Was the worst posistion by far I'd ever had a chance to play at. Had only played receiver and free safety before it though. Now those two posistions were fun..
It doesn't get any better than playing QB!!!! :)
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Old 04-02-2007, 10:34 PM    (permalink
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My post about being a "stud in the NFL" was a joke...Playing Madden won't make you a better QB if you aready been coached, but like it or not it does give you a simple idea of how a QB reads... All these so called expert who posted what a NFL QB goes through reading a covage bisically wrote a simple strategy guide for Madden... Try playing Madden on the hardest setting and you'll see that the AI isn't so stupid and you'll end up useing everything you know about reading covage to be successful at the game...
No, not really. I've gotten to the point where I blow out my opponents both the computer on All-Madden and the best opponents on XBOX Live. I realized a long time ago that I did not need to read the defense. The most I might do is shift my running play to the other side, but that's about it. I don't care what kind of defense the opposition is playing, because I know I don't have to to be successful. Madden requires very little football knowledge, just some common sense.
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Old 04-02-2007, 10:58 PM    (permalink
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1.) What does a Quarterback look for in Defenses pre-snap? I think one of the things he looks for is the depth of the Safeties, how deep they are and how far apart from each other they are. Do they also need to look at the Cornerback's alignment? For instance if they are in a squat stance to play press, or bail coverage. Or if they are in a 2 point stand up stance to play slide technique or off coverage?

Do they have to mix up their snap cadences to try and see which Defenders are blitzing and from where, and expose disguised coverages? and then adjust his pass protection calls accordingly. What else does a QB need to look for before the snap?


A lot of it with the corners has to do with the route the receiver is running. For example, with Steve Smith Carolina will often give him an option of a smoke route, or a deep post. If the corner is up, its the deeper option and Jake is to check down to his second or third read, if the corners off in bail coverage he'll get the smoke route and try to bust it for a better gain. If the safeties are both right back and the corners are off on a manageable down and distance they'll want to use a shorter route, or even audible to a run play.

QBs look for players possibly blitzing, dropping into zone coverage or man where a route is going to be and where, based on positioning of defenders on the field he might have to adjust a play, or complete cancel a route and change his progressions.

Before the snap he'll also look at the body language of the defenders, if a linebacker is leaning forward on his toes hands on knees its clear they're going to blitz. If they're back on their heels and they're heads a little higher, they're going to drop into zone. There's little things to, like whether a corner is watching the QB, or his receiver. If a corner is trying to cheat inside a little bit. If a safety is starting to walk in a little, trying to jump a route.

They mix up a snap count to get the defenders off balance. If every third down throw the QB goes on two, then the defenders will be coming all day. If they go on first noise, on three and then on one or even a silent count the defense loses a split second which can be the difference between a sack and a completion.

2.) What determines how a QB goes through his progressions? What does he look for when he goes through his reads? Is he looking for certain types of coverages, weak points in zones? Is he looking for a certain degree of separation from Defenders?

What makes him pull the trigger on his read? and what determines if he needs to move onto the next progression?


The progressions are determined by the play. Some plays your primary receiver might be the tight end, in the slot or the split end. Therefore they become the first read. When they're covered, i.e. Their defender is on their hip and has body position on the route, they're covered in zone with a man underneath and above then he looks elsewhere.

The ideal target is a receiver who has about 1-2 feet distance between them and the defender, size and is in a good position to catch the ball away from their body, keep in bounds and be able to secure it. That's a bonafide reception. Other times, QBs will go to a player with the best chance of coming down with the ball. In Carolina Jake Delhomme looked to Keyshawn a lot under pressure, he's big, sure handed and experienced. In Atlanta Vick looks to crumpler, manning has harrison. That's their go to guy.

Qbs can choose not to throw to a guy because they're covered, but covered isn't always having someone on your hip. There might be a safety streaking in to close off the throwing lane, a linebacker who's dropped underneath or the route is drawing them toward free defenders.
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Old 04-03-2007, 09:05 AM    (permalink
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[b]
If the corner is up, its the deeper option and Jake is to check down to his second or third read
Jake Delhomme has a 2nd and third option? I thought Steve Smith was his only choice...
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Old 04-03-2007, 03:15 PM    (permalink
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Make sure you dont throw out of your vision cone. Youre accuracy will be terrible.
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Old 04-03-2007, 03:24 PM    (permalink
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Originally Posted by njx9 View Post
also: i hate anyone who thinks madden actually teaches you much of anything about actually playing a position or the theory behind it.
Ehm... I owe to madden: my interest in Football, the understanding of most rules, the difference between different defensive schemes and a whole lot more. I learned HEAPS of stuff from madden. Stuff you, as an american, would consider basic, but to me (european, which means I'd kick your butt in anything related to soccer, but we don't get any American Football around here, weed is legal though), a 'fumble' was just a weird word until I started playing madden.
Honestly, I understand your point, but I learned a lot from that stupid game.
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