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The San Diego Chargers' DT RUN KEY TECHNIQUES.

The San Diego Chargers run a very aggressive attack and read-on-the-run style of defense in which our defensive linemen are constantly told to knock their man back off the ball rather than run laterally and create lanes for cutback runners.

We expect our defensive linemen to have a basic knowledge of the opponents' down-and-distance tendencies, different backfield sets, and blocking schemes for every set.

We want our DT to align with his feet well under him, ready to fight pressure from any direction. He must concentrate on the opponent nearest to him, as he is the man who can get to him first.

We also teach our DT how to read blocking combinations while on the run. That will tell him what kind of run it is and what kind of escape technique to use.

The movement of the opponent's head can also be used as a key to the ball. The DT must be able to move instantly on the snap or the movement of the offensive lineman in order to attack the man or penetrate the LOS as fast as possible.

The DT should never allow an easy release. He must deliver a blow that will neutralize the block or gain position on the man. He should step with the inside foot and deliver the initial blow with open palms to the opponent's chest or shoulders.

This movement of the hands and arms must be forward through the man, deriving operating room by locking out the arms.

Accelerating the feet on contact will help knock the man back. Coaching point: Play the game on the opponent's side of the line.

Our 3 technique tackle sets up in a 3-point stance on the outside leg of the OG with the inside foot back and inside hand down. He plays as tight to the guard as possible without being hooked.

He keys the guard's head. On a run to his side, the DT runs to the B gap. On a run away, he squeezes and releases to the A gap.

Following are techniques used by our 3 technique tackle vs. the various blocking patterns.

Note: The first step is always an explosion into the opposing guard's near shoulder.

1 Vs. Base Block. (Explode...) Get hands inside, lock out, and separate. Hold the B gap and squeeze the A gap. Locate ball, shed, and make play.

2 Vs. Reach Block. (Explode...) Drive though the G with a hand-shiver and push his outside shoulder upfield with your outside arm. Knock the man back and keep leverage on the block until the ball is declared inside or outside. If G is too flat, drop your outside shoulder and wheel backdoor. Locate ball, shed, and make play.

3 Vs. Cut-Off Block. Squeeze down, condensing the A gap and protecting the gap. If there is no threat to B gap, locate ball, shed, and pursue. If the G is too flat, drop your inside shoulder and wheel backdoor. Flatten and pursue.

4 Vs. Power Scoop Block. (Explode...) Get hands on G and play the cut-off block. Upon feeling the T, turn your body, get in the seam between the G and T, and shoot your upfield arm and shoulder through.

Make the T push you into the play. Hold on to G as long as you can; this will pull you into the gap. Use outside hand to protect legs against the cut block. Coaching point: Note pre-snap splits and stance. This is the #1 block vs. a 3-technique tackle. Locate ball, shed, and make play.

5 Vs. Double-Team Block. (Explode...) When you feel T, drop outside knee to ground, turn and lean back into T. Hold on to G as you lean back and split the double-team. Come off knee when one of them releases upfield.

6 Vs. Tag Block. (Explode...) When G pulls, play back into the T by squatting and squeezing hole. If T is flat, cross his face. If T is upfield, backdoor his block by lowering your inside shoulder and flattening down the line. Locate ball, shed, and pursue to ball.

7 Vs. Veer Trap Block. (Explode...) Veer blocking means trap. Get hands on G and get close, looking for trapping G. If trapper is coming, spill outside and get upfield shoulder underneath the trapper.

8 Vs. Cut-Off Block. (Explode...) Ricochet off tackle and flatten with G. Use outside hand to protect legs. Don't allow yourself to get cut. Locate ball, shed, and make play. Coaching point: Note cheated-down split of T. Tighten down to outside eye of G.

9 Vs. Fold Block. (Explode...) If G pulls, think fold block by C. When you feel pressure from the C, squeeze him and protect B gap. If there is no threat to B gap, beat the C's blocks and sprint to ball. If C is upfield, drop inside shoulder and flatten down the line backdoor. If C is too flat, cross his face.

10 Vs. Influence Trap Block. "High hat" means pass! Rush! Explode upfield with first step, attacking G's near shoulder. If G releases outside, think trap. Find the trapping G and attack him with inside shoulder and squeeze the ball. Be sure to close the distance between you and trapper.

11 Vs. Draw Block. "High hat" means pass. Rush! If you feel the G turning you upfield, come back out the way you went in. Retrace your steps and divert the back's course. Recognize short step and influence by G. Play pass first. Note the difference between draw set and pass set.
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Article Details
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Title Annotation:defensive tackle
Author:NUNNELY, WAYNE
Publication:Coach and Athletic Director
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Sep 1, 2001
Words:923
Previous Article:CORE TRAINING.
Next Article:THE ETERNAL TRIANGLE.
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