Stop the Screen Pass and Save Your Sanity

The title to this article is a little misleading. It probably implies that I have managed to save my sanity. Let me clarify, what is on paper does not always happen on the field. Screen passes have had me tearing my hair out for years!

Between defending the run, and stopping the pass, from multiple fronts and coverages, it is easy to run out of time to teach defending the screen pass. But you have to! If you can read it, you can stop it, and get back to defending all the things you designed your defense for.Screen to the ReceiverHere we have a pretty basic screen. The Quarterback is faking a Sprint Pass to the right, with the sprint side receivers running typical flood routes. This gets the Linebackers flowing, and the free safety as well. Of course, your Defensive Line is also pinning their ears back to get to the QB out there.The QB plants his foot, spins back and his the #1 receiver to the left, who’s blocking has been setting up during the sprint action. The slot handles the most dangerous receiver, while the screen side offensive linemen handle the rest of the bodies on the field. And we’re off to the races!Screen passes are becoming a crucial part of defending opponents. The popular Air Raid Offense utilizes screens and draws as their running game. You have to be able to stop the Screen to stop spread offenses who are trying to slow down your pass rush.


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