I’ve always wanted to put together the advantages of the Odd Front and the advantages of the Even Front defenses. They both have great points. Its not a secret that I prefer the 4 down linemen, but I’ve also talked a lot in the past about the 3-5-3. Every sound defensive structure has its place, no doubt. The question is how much of that can you install, teach technique, and run effectively in a given season.My ideal is to have a 3, 4, and 5 man front without making any personnel changes. To do this, we’re going to need to base out of a 3 down front. That doesn’t mean we’re going to run it more than anything else, just that this is what we’ll build off of. If you start out with 4 down linemen, one of those guys that you need to drop off to play an Outside Linebacker position in your 3-man front is going to consider himself a lineman. Linemen don’t drop into coverage (mind you, this is all a mental game, because it could be the exact same player going either way), but Linebackers rush the passer and stop the run. So making a Linebacker into a Defensive End is natural, while making a Defensive End into a Linebacker is not. Maybe it only makes sense to me, but it that’s good enough.HeadsOur base front, HEADS, is going to involve a head up Nose Guard (0 technique) along with two head up Tackles (4 techniques). Names are irrelevant, it doesn’t matter if you call them Ends or Tackles. [Read more...]
There’s always a lot of discussion every year about Defensive End technique, specifically for the strong side Defensive End. We’re talking primarily about Even front defenses like the 4-2-5 Defense and the 4-3 Defense. Real quick, let me just say that I call an inside shade on the Tight End a 7 technique, a head up shade a 6 technique, and an outside shade a 9 technique.(note: If you look at my 4-3 Defense book you’ll see that when I’m actually teaching it to the kids I call the inside shade a 6i technique. I do this because all even numbers are head up, all inside shades are the head up number with an “i” to indicate “inside” and all outside shades are odd. But if I’m talking to a coach, I call it a 7, 6, 9 technique because… because for god’s sake, Bear Bryant said it that way and who the heck am I to argue!?)So what are the advantages and disadvantages to playing each? Everyone has their reason to play each individual technique. If you hear someone tell you that you “should not” play a certain technique, without any consideration for your personnel or style of defense – walk away from that person politely. They aren’t really thinking. All three of these techniques have their advantages.For starters, let me say that if I look at a defense and they’re playing a 9 Technique the majority of the time, I consider that team a 4-3 Defense. If they’re playing a 7 tech most of the time, I would consider that a 4-4 Defense or 4-2-5 Defense. Is that right? I don’t know. Don’t care. But for future reference in this article or in reading other posts on Installing the Miami 4-3 Defensive Front.