The 12 Posts of Playoffs : 7 Hole

football, basics, playoffs, hole

I hope you guys didn’t have plans to do anything other than learn football, because apparently I decided to hit you with all of the hard stuff this week. But you are going to rock this weekend’s playoff games with all of this new info, so there’s that.

Ok! So, 7-hole. As per usual, it sounds like something it’s not. Golf, in this case.

In Monday’s post we referenced gaps, and today we’re going to talk about a similar concept: holes. Here’s the thing:

To prevent both offensive and defensive play calling from turning into “Hey, I’m going over there and you go over there!” football has a system of naming spaces in the offensive line. Defensive players identify space with letters called gaps. Offensive players identify spaces with numbers called holes. As with techniques, the value increases from inside to outside.

So in Monday’s post about defensive techniques, we described players as being responsible for “shooting the B gap” or “blocking the A gap.” That just means they are responsible for that specific space on the offensive line. It looks something like this:

football, basics, gaps

On offense, the gaps are numbered, not lettered. Like this:

football, basics, holes

What do those numbers mean?

The number of the hole tells the running back where to go when the play is called. Even numbers are always on the right, odd numbers are always on the left, and both increase as they move from inside to outside. Identifying the hole in the play call lets all of the other offensive players know where the play is going and therefore the area they are responsible for blocking.

So, as per this post, let’s say a running play was called and it was called to go through the 7-hole. The running back would take the handoff and go to the outside left, probably receiving blocking help from the tight end and left side of the offensive line.

Make sense?

For much, much more on all things gaps and holes, check out this post.

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