Slots – How Slots Can Help NFL Wide Receivers


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Slot receivers are becoming more prominent in the NFL, thanks to players like Tyreek Hill and Brandin Cooks. They’re typically smaller than other wide receivers, but they can stretch the defense vertically through pure speed and quick-out routes, like slants. This makes them well suited for a team that utilizes a lot of fast-paced passing schemes.

They’re also a key part of teams that run more running plays, as they tend to line up closer to the middle of the field. Their pre-snap alignment often dictates which defenders they’ll block — they may need to chip a safety, or they might have to perform a crack back block on defensive ends.

In addition to being a critical factor in the success of a running play, slot receivers are also key for sealing off outside linebackers and safeties on passing plays. This is why their initial blocking after the snap is so important, and it’s something they’re able to do much more easily than other wide receivers can.

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