Using TB Push Motion-5 Simple Plays

Mazzone Push Motion

Today we are going to talk about incorporating TB push motion into your offense.  I first started seeing a lot of this when DeMarco Murray was at Oklahoma but really have to give credit to Noel Mazzone for making it a staple in my offense.  Although I do not follow Coach Mazzone's system "NZONE" verbatim, i do like a lot of his ideas.  The push motion by the running back is a short quick pre snap motion out of the backfield working wide towards the sideline.

1)Puts immediate stress on width and perimeter of defense
2)Gets athletes in space
3)Makes defense defend 2 back sets, while you quickly motion to 1 back
4)Helps differentiate coverages
5)Allows QB to make post snap decisions which helps tempo

This motion is usually most effective in an up tempo hurry up style offense.  It lends itself to several post snap read plays and constraint plays which help offenses play ultra fast.  The best up tempo teams are the ones who incorporate multiple reads and options for the QB all in a single play call.  We all remember the Ole Miss bowl game a few years back when they went down the field in 5 plays in less than 1:30 and 4 different players touched the ball.  Although that was not using push motion, what it was using was the simplest of up tempo theories which is one play with several options.  Let's face it, anybody can be up tempo and call plays lightning fast but do those plays give the QB enough options with the ball.  You could line up and run toss sweep 5 times straight out of the same formation, and probably snap the ball in under 15 seconds each time.  But is that effective?

20 Personnel 2 Back
So what we are looking at is a 2 back spread set with 20 personnel.  With 2 backs in the backfield you are going to force the defense to defend 2 back runs.  You still have power and isolation type plays.  The defense has to account for all the gaps in the run game if you have 2 back sets.  Now, using push motion you can create width, leverage, and numbers very quickly.  You will essentially be getting into a 3x1 set almost immediately.  You already have twin receivers flanked wide and you are now adding a third receiver that gets out there very quickly with limited time for the defense to adjust.  If you have ever coached defensive football you understand that 3x1 sets usually involve different variations of coverage.  By aligning in 2 back twins and pushing the TB out we will get to a trips set immediately giving the defense short notice to adjust.  Although the coverage structure may not change drastically the defense has to account for the numbers and leverage advantage of the offense.  The movement and adjustment of the defense is the read for the QB alerting him what to do with the football.  You are simply trying to play a game of chess with the defense and ultimately always have the last move.

The best thing about it, is the fact you can stay within your base core plays and schemes and not try to recreate the wheel offensively.  What I would like to do today is give you 5 very basic plays you can incorporate using push motion.  They all feed off one another and there is consistency in your teaching.  Many great offensive minds have always said "Don't change your plays, just change the presentation." We are merely giving the defense a slightly different look to run our standard offensive plays.  I hope you enjoy the video and keep PLAYING FAST!!!!

Defending The Flex Bone


Today I want to talk about defending the base flex bone offense from your base 425 package.  We will be looking at the standard double wing version of the flex bone offense, and the most basic runs from it.  The key here is playing it from your basic defensive package that will not require a ton of changes or adjustments.  The key to remember is you may only have 2-3 full days to prepare for it.  With that being said you cannot ask your kids to try and play something new in 3 days.  You have to have a system that can adapt and adjust to that offense.  We will look at how we use our 425 to defend the basic concepts of the flex bone offense.  It will only cover the basic concepts of the flex bone, and i know there will be some flex bone fans that will insist there is much more to the offense and i admit there definitely is.  If you watch a fine tuned Georgia Tech, Navy, or Air Force offense it is a nightmare to defend.  I want to look at defending the simplest forms of the Veer, Midline, Rocket Toss and Counter play.

The biggest thing to understand is staying with your base system of playing defense.  Do not try and become something you are not.  Figure out a way to play what you play all the time with "MINOR" wrinkles and adjustments.  This will allow your kids to play fast with confidence, and allow you to continue to grow throughout the season.  If you try to change what you do for one week it will slow your players down and slow down the development of the defensive scheme.  When playing against an option style offense assignments and keys will be the biggest challenge for the week.  Making sure guys know where they fit vs. option schemes is a huge deal.  An even bigger deal is keeping it simple so the fits and assignments stay the same.  Trying to play the veer or midline plays 4 different ways may seem intriguing but it confuses players.  Letting your players play to their comfort level with speed and aggression is your safest bet.  With that said there will be some wrinkles but they are minor adjustments.

What we do is we play an 8 man front with the FS letting the motion of the wings dictate our read side which becomes our quarters coverage side.  Both corners will play aggressive man so the motions do not affect them.  The motion sets the read side for the FS.  In essence when a flex bone team runs orbit or pick up motion it becomes a 2 back set.  If they run a bunch of plays without motion it puts you in a one high concept but it also limits the numbers they can create with motion as well.  We played the veer option play with simple rules.  The ends try to eliminate the dive, the ILB'S run over the top to the QB, the down safeties play the pitch, and the FS runs the Alley playing QB to pitch.  If we use any stunts we send dlineman underneath so they still have dive responsibility and ILB'S still have QB.  We stay away from exotic movements that change the option fits.  We like the inside LB'S on the QB because in Florida the offensive lineman cannot cut LB'S so they have a hard time getting to LB'S running over the top to the QB.  With that said your LB's have to know what they are looking at and looking for because if they hesitate they will get blocked.  If the wings try to block the ILB then the FS must play the QB in the alley.  The midline play will be played differently but in a similar theory.  We like our dlineman tackling the dive and our LB'S on the QB with help.  Normally there will be some sort of fold block by a wing so we can get an extra body on the midline if our down safety can fold when the wing folds.  This involves tremendous eye discipline from the down safeties because the play may look similar to the veer option.  The ends will be C gap players because they normally get base blocks by the offensive tackles.

All of these things can be very hard to explain in writing so I hope you can watch the 40 minute YouTube video which will go through defending the veer, midline, rocket toss, and counter plays.  It will talk about the coverage we use and the option fits.  I hope this helps. Keep Playing Fast.