Favorite Defensive Scheme

Favorite Defensive Scheme

  • 4-3

    Votes: 14 20.6%
  • 4-4

    Votes: 8 11.8%
  • 4-2-5

    Votes: 17 25.0%
  • 3-4

    Votes: 10 14.7%
  • 3-5-3 (33 Stack)

    Votes: 8 11.8%
  • 5-3

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Wide 6

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 46 Bear

    Votes: 2 2.9%
  • 5-2

    Votes: 5 7.4%
  • 6-1

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 6-2

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Seven Diamond

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 3-3-5

    Votes: 4 5.9%

  • Total voters
    68

The Infidel

Active member
Well since some of us are former/current coaches and some of us wish to be coaches since we’ve been coaching from the bleachers for years now....What’s your Favorite Defensive Scheme? What Front and Personnel would you use? What about coverage? I’d like this to be a fun an enjoyable conversation about the defensive side of the ball
 

cincifbfan

Well-known member
I like this idea and really want to think about it because I have a few that I absolutely love, so I need to narrow it down.

Could you please make 3-5 and 3-3 stack separate options as they are quite different scheme wise. You separated the 4-4 & 4-2-5, so let's separate the the 3-5 & 3-3 please.
 

HighSchoolFB45

Well-known member
Wapakoneta takes a lot of concepts from Ohio State They run a base 4-3 gap control with a cover 2 man concept. Depending on the strength, the nose and tackle will flip between a 1 and 3 technique. For example, let’s throw out a trips to the defensive right with a single receiver on the backside and a TE to the right. The 3 technique will play on the right side and take the front side B gap. The 1 technique will take the backside A gap, while the mike linebacker will have the frontside A gap. The backside linebacker will take the backside B gap and the defensive end will have outside contain. the frontside backer will have the frontside B gap and the defensive end will have outside contain. In terms of coverage, to the trips side, the corner and safety will work together. if one receiver runs a short route, the corner will take them if the other receiver runs a deep route. For the TE, the linebacker and backside safety will “bracket” the TE. If the TE runs a route under 5 yards , the linebacker will take them. If it’s more than 5, the backside safety will take them. The backside corner is locked on the backside receiver.
 

The Infidel

Active member
I like this idea and really want to think about it because I have a few that I absolutely love, so I need to narrow it down.

Could you please make 3-5 and 3-3 stack separate options as they are quite different scheme wise. You separated the 4-4 & 4-2-5, so let's separate the the 3-5 & 3-3 please.
I added the 3-3-5. Yes my mistake, you must be talking the St. Xavier Stack
 

The Infidel

Active member
Wapakoneta takes a lot of concepts from Ohio State They run a base 4-3 gap control with a cover 2 man concept. Depending on the strength, the nose and tackle will flip between a 1 and 3 technique. For example, let’s throw out a trips to the defensive right with a single receiver on the backside and a TE to the right. The 3 technique will play on the right side and take the front side B gap. The 1 technique will take the backside A gap, while the mike linebacker will have the frontside A gap. The backside linebacker will take the backside B gap and the defensive end will have outside contain. the frontside backer will have the frontside B gap and the defensive end will have outside contain. In terms of coverage, to the trips side, the corner and safety will work together. if one receiver runs a short route, the corner will take them if the other receiver runs a deep route. For the TE, the linebacker and backside safety will “bracket” the TE. If the TE runs a route under 5 yards , the linebacker will take them. If it’s more than 5, the backside safety will take them. The backside corner is locked on the backside receiver.
Good stuff, anything OSU is always sound. Unless it’s made but Greg Schiano. Complete clown
 

Chisel

Active member
Wapakoneta takes a lot of concepts from Ohio State They run a base 4-3 gap control with a cover 2 man concept. Depending on the strength, the nose and tackle will flip between a 1 and 3 technique. For example, let’s throw out a trips to the defensive right with a single receiver on the backside and a TE to the right. The 3 technique will play on the right side and take the front side B gap. The 1 technique will take the backside A gap, while the mike linebacker will have the frontside A gap. The backside linebacker will take the backside B gap and the defensive end will have outside contain. the frontside backer will have the frontside B gap and the defensive end will have outside contain. In terms of coverage, to the trips side, the corner and safety will work together. if one receiver runs a short route, the corner will take them if the other receiver runs a deep route. For the TE, the linebacker and backside safety will “bracket” the TE. If the TE runs a route under 5 yards , the linebacker will take them. If it’s more than 5, the backside safety will take them. The backside corner is locked on the backside receiver.
Probably the best defense in D3 they were phenomenal.
 

Auggie

Well-known member
To me it depends a lot on personnel, I am not a fan of coaches that say this is my system and force players to fit into it I think it should be the other way around. As they say, put the players in the best position to succeed.

I guess in the current spread happy offense era a version of the 4-2-5 type system would probably be the best. I would have the DTs play with assignment integrity and keep the middle clogged, the WDE having weak side contain responsibility and a star/rover/SS that can cover inside receivers and support the LBs with the run having the strong side contain responsibility. CBs playing press man and getting the opposing WRs out of rhythm, most spread offenses are best when the QB and WRs are playing catch so no soft zone. I also like to have my best athlete that can tackle playing a center field type FS, to me the one thing that you cannot have as defensive coach is the home run TD. But most importantly keep it simple! No complex systems where the kids are thinking instead of doing.
 

BleedPurple13

Active member
I think the 4-2-5 is the best defense for today's game. You can move 2 of the safeties around alot which can really confuse lineman and leave them unblocked. Can defend the run and the spread.

One small adjustment teams can make when you run 4 down linemen is to move your nose to a 2i. We ran it that way in college. With the nose on the inside eye of the guard it is much harder for them to pull, use a center/guard combo and get a big wash on a down block. It's quietly very effective.
 

yakyak

Well-known member
We like to have 11 guys chase the ball and knock over the runner before crossing the zero yard line. Our goal is to this 4 times in a row. If we can do this each time before the runner acconlishes two yards of movememt we call this a stop. We call this defense. Please add defense.
 

The Infidel

Active member
To me it depends a lot on personnel, I am not a fan of coaches that say this is my system and force players to fit into it I think it should be the other way around. As they say, put the players in the best position to succeed.

I guess in the current spread happy offense era a version of the 4-2-5 type system would probably be the best. I would have the DTs play with assignment integrity and keep the middle clogged, the WDE having weak side contain responsibility and a star/rover/SS that can cover inside receivers and support the LBs with the run having the strong side contain responsibility. CBs playing press man and getting the opposing WRs out of rhythm, most spread offenses are best when the QB and WRs are playing catch so no soft zone. I also like to have my best athlete that can tackle playing a center field type FS, to me the one thing that you cannot have as defensive coach is the home run TD. But most importantly keep it simple! No complex systems where the kids are thinking instead of doing.
Agree 100% about best fit, gotta get your best 11 Combo on field

My biggest gripe about the 4-2-5 is how you defend certain formations mainly 11P. Especially these Quarters based teams that refuse to play 3 deep. A la the Mount Union 4-2-5
 

cincifbfan

Well-known member
I'm going to have to go with a high pressure 4-4 scheme. I think that gives you more flexibility than even the 4-2-5. I personally think it's easier to take your most athletic OLB and drop him back to safety for a cover 2 look than having a safety roll down and play a designated linebacker position. Having 8 in the box in high school I think is paramount as 90% of the juggernauts are super run heavy. My favorite 4-4 schemes are gap controlled like mentioned before with Wapokoneta. I personally prefer the "over front" where the 3 technique is to the offenses strength and has the B gap, and the nose is in the 1 technique away taking the A gap. That 1 technique player MUST command a double team between the center and guard. Now, my favorite alignment is with the strong side DE, if there is a Tight End, he will line up inside the TE's shoulder in a 7 technique. Most teams put that DE outside the TE in a 9 technique for contain, or put him on the outside shoulder of the OT to play C gap. I like the 7 technique because it forces contact on the TE on every play, so free releases are hard in pass game. You also dictate who the TE blocks in the run game. You teach that 7 technique DE to make contact with TE every single play. This has to be your best D-lineman. It should also force a double team with the TE and OT on that strong-side DE. With this alignment, you have 2 D-linemen being double teamed... you are using 6 offensive players to block your 4. That leaves your LBs to run free and be studs. Then the fun starts when you start blitzing the H3LL out of your LBs, Safeties, Corners, etc. The offensive line breaks down very fast leading to smothering defense. You combine this with a few simple but effective coverages mixing in a couple of zone and man coverages. The last team I saw run this defense was LaSalle's last 2 years of winning state championships. Man, those boys were swarming all over the place.

A close second would be St. X 3-3 stack. It has been imitated by many and perfected by nobody but St. X. It is a thing of beauty to see the Bomber Defense when it is clicking.... it's very simple, but offenses can never seem to figure out how to attack their scheme, even though they've been running it for probably 20+ years.
 

ghsknightsfan

Well-known member
i think most of it at this level depends on the strengths of your team. if your front 7 are weak, i’m bringing down an extra backer and playing a 4-4-3, but if i’m weaker in the defensive backfield, i’m running a 4-2-5 most days. in the defense we ran when i coached, we switched it up week to week based on the other opponent, but kept the same concepts. the current Greenon base defense is a 4-3-4. i’ve also had a lot of success as a 3-5-3, and a 4-5-2 against some certain teams that didn’t (or couldn’t) pass.
 

The Infidel

Active member
i think most of it at this level depends on the strengths of your team. if your front 7 are weak, i’m bringing down an extra backer and playing a 4-4-3, but if i’m weaker in the defensive backfield, i’m running a 4-2-5 most days. in the defense we ran when i coached, we switched it up week to week based on the other opponent, but kept the same concepts. the current Greenon base defense is a 4-3-4.
Do you prefer the Under or Over front out of it?
 

The Infidel

Active member
I'm going to have to go with a high pressure 4-4 scheme. I think that gives you more flexibility than even the 4-2-5. I personally think it's easier to take your most athletic OLB and drop him back to safety for a cover 2 look than having a safety roll down and play a designated linebacker position. Having 8 in the box in high school I think is paramount as 90% of the juggernauts are super run heavy. My favorite 4-4 schemes are gap controlled like mentioned before with Wapokoneta. I personally prefer the "over front" where the 3 technique is to the offenses strength and has the B gap, and the nose is in the 1 technique away taking the A gap. That 1 technique player MUST command a double team between the center and guard. Now, my favorite alignment is with the strong side DE, if there is a Tight End, he will line up inside the TE's shoulder in a 7 technique. Most teams put that DE outside the TE in a 9 technique for contain, or put him on the outside shoulder of the OT to play C gap. I like the 7 technique because it forces contact on the TE on every play, so free releases are hard in pass game. You also dictate who the TE blocks in the run game. You teach that 7 technique DE to make contact with TE every single play. This has to be your best D-lineman. It should also force a double team with the TE and OT on that strong-side DE. With this alignment, you have 2 D-linemen being double teamed... you are using 6 offensive players to block your 4. That leaves your LBs to run free and be studs. Then the fun starts when you start blitzing the H3LL out of your LBs, Safeties, Corners, etc. The offensive line breaks down very fast leading to smothering defense. You combine this with a few simple but effective coverages mixing in a couple of zone and man coverages. The last team I saw run this defense was LaSalle's last 2 years of winning state championships. Man, those boys were swarming all over the place.

A close second would be St. X 3-3 stack. It has been imitated by many and perfected by nobody but St. X. It is a thing of beauty to see the Bomber Defense when it is clicking.... it's very simple, but offenses can never seem to figure out how to attack their scheme, even though they've been running it for probably 20+ years.
I knew you were talking about the X stack. Very creative
 

BleedPurple13

Active member
I'm going to have to go with a high pressure 4-4 scheme. I think that gives you more flexibility than even the 4-2-5. I personally think it's easier to take your most athletic OLB and drop him back to safety for a cover 2 look than having a safety roll down and play a designated linebacker position. Having 8 in the box in high school I think is paramount as 90% of the juggernauts are super run heavy. My favorite 4-4 schemes are gap controlled like mentioned before with Wapokoneta. I personally prefer the "over front" where the 3 technique is to the offenses strength and has the B gap, and the nose is in the 1 technique away taking the A gap. That 1 technique player MUST command a double team between the center and guard. Now, my favorite alignment is with the strong side DE, if there is a Tight End, he will line up inside the TE's shoulder in a 7 technique. Most teams put that DE outside the TE in a 9 technique for contain, or put him on the outside shoulder of the OT to play C gap. I like the 7 technique because it forces contact on the TE on every play, so free releases are hard in pass game. You also dictate who the TE blocks in the run game. You teach that 7 technique DE to make contact with TE every single play. This has to be your best D-lineman. It should also force a double team with the TE and OT on that strong-side DE. With this alignment, you have 2 D-linemen being double teamed... you are using 6 offensive players to block your 4. That leaves your LBs to run free and be studs. Then the fun starts when you start blitzing the H3LL out of your LBs, Safeties, Corners, etc. The offensive line breaks down very fast leading to smothering defense. You combine this with a few simple but effective coverages mixing in a couple of zone and man coverages. The last team I saw run this defense was LaSalle's last 2 years of winning state championships. Man, those boys were swarming all over the place.

A close second would be St. X 3-3 stack. It has been imitated by many and perfected by nobody but St. X. It is a thing of beauty to see the Bomber Defense when it is clicking.... it's very simple, but offenses can never seem to figure out how to attack their scheme, even though they've been running it for probably 20+ years.
The 7 technique also makes the traditional power play a little harder. If he is on the inside of the TE you generally won't get an easy down block and the TE needs to be a great blocker to handle it all night.
 

cincifbfan

Well-known member
Agree 100% about best fit, gotta get your best 11 Combo on field

My biggest gripe about the 4-2-5 is how you defend certain formations mainly 11P. Especially these Quarters based teams that refuse to play 3 deep. A la the Mount Union 4-2-5
My biggest gripe with 4-2-5 is it is susceptible to power runs, especially off tackle. If you wash down the ILBs, you have an alley right behind the OT to the outside of the defense.... giant gaping hole between the backers and the corners when your 3 safeties/adjusters/alley guys are 7+ yards deep. You can churn up 4+ yards a carry easy against the 4-2-5 if you really wanted to, even without going 11 personnel. I personally think it was easier when I coached offense to do it from the spread.... QB Power all day or counter!
 

cincifbfan

Well-known member
The 7 technique also makes the traditional power play a little harder. If he is on the inside of the TE you generally won't get an easy down block and the TE needs to be a great blocker to handle it all night.
100% correct. It baffles me that nobody uses a 7 technique really anymore! And when you put a DE in a 7 technique, I've heard opposing players and coaches yell "what is that?" Very under-utilized in today's game.
 

BleedPurple13

Active member
My biggest gripe with 4-2-5 is it is susceptible to power runs, especially off tackle. If you wash down the ILBs, you have an alley right behind the OT to the outside of the defense.... giant gaping hole between the backers and the corners when your 3 safeties/adjusters/alley guys are 7+ yards deep. You can churn up 4+ yards a carry easy against the 4-2-5 if you really wanted to, even without going 11 personnel. I personally think it was easier when I coached offense to do it from the spread.... QB Power all day or counter!
I like the 4-2-5. I prefer my 2 extra backs to be more or less rovers who move around on the box. Similar to 4-4 but with more movement and having them play deeper coverage on occasion.
 

cincifbfan

Well-known member
I like the 4-2-5. I prefer my 2 extra backs to be more or less rovers who move around on the box. Similar to 4-4 but with more movement and having them play deeper coverage on occasion.
I can get behind that, that sounds a lot like the 4-4 I have mentioned overall.
 

BleedPurple13

Active member
100% correct. It baffles me that nobody uses a 7 technique really anymore! And when you put a DE in a 7 technique, I've heard opposing players and coaches yell "what is that?" Very under-utilized in today's game.
I know! It makes the tackles job harder too. If he needs to reach the 7, if you coach him to make contact with the TE, he is going to go with him if he goes wide for outside zone/sweep. Blocking down a full gap is one of the easiest in the game to wash someon further down and it gets essentially eliminated. Also squeezes down the play if he is the kick out guy. Such a great technique.
 

ghsknightsfan

Well-known member
Do you prefer the Under or Over front out of it?
over front. i typically had a quicker kid as my back side linebacker, which i flipped to the weak side. our weakness was the D-Line back when i coached and this helped us play the run stronger, but also put pressure on our DB’s to not get beat. but we had better athletes compared to our opponents apparently, and teams rarely passed on us. but really, it’s a personnel thing. i liked the 4-4-3 a lot, but my 4th outside backer was usually more of an athlete that could roll back to safety, as well as be sent on stunts.
 

BleedPurple13

Active member
I can get behind that, that sounds a lot like the 4-4 I have mentioned overall.
Yes. My problem with the 4-4 was I thought it was the easiest to block when I was in HS. Guys line up and are generally playing in there gap pre snap.

At this level most lines won't do well when guys are moving. It's hard to read for the QB too if your not sure if a guy is gonna stay in the box or bail deep.
 

cincifbfan

Well-known member
I know! It makes the tackles job harder too. If he needs to reach the 7, if you coach him to make contact with the TE, he is going to go with him if he goes wide for outside zone/sweep. Blocking down a full gap is one of the easiest in the game to wash someon further down and it gets essentially eliminated. Also squeezes down the play if he is the kick out guy. Such a great technique.
Bingo... if we ever saw a 9 technique... we are trapping him to death all night and running underneath and there's nothing the defense can do to stop it!
 

BleedPurple13

Active member
Another thing HS coaches don't utilize enough is stunting/moving linemen.

In college we ran a traditional 4 3 but are linemen were constantly slanting/angling across gaps. Especially when bringing pressure.
 

cincifbfan

Well-known member
Yes. My problem with the 4-4 was I thought it was the easiest to block when I was in HS. Guys line up and are generally playing in there gap pre snap.

At this level most lines won't do well when guys are moving. It's hard to read for the QB too if your not sure if a guy is gonna stay in the box or bail deep.
That's where your pressure packages come in. When you start blitzing LBs, Safeties, and whatnot, it takes the OL off of their normal assignments. You also throw big wrenches in the OL blocking when your blitzers cross, and you start stunting the DL in unison. Then you really throw them off when you bring nobody else on a 3rd and long and play coverage, they really didn't like that.
 

Auggie

Well-known member
My biggest gripe with 4-2-5 is it is susceptible to power runs, especially off tackle. If you wash down the ILBs, you have an alley right behind the OT to the outside of the defense.... giant gaping hole between the backers and the corners when your 3 safeties/adjusters/alley guys are 7+ yards deep. You can churn up 4+ yards a carry easy against the 4-2-5 if you really wanted to, even without going 11 personnel. I personally think it was easier when I coached offense to do it from the spread.... QB Power all day or counter!
Not many spread teams have a QB that can or is willing to run off tackle multiple times during a drive, then turn around and do some kind of timing pass play. Also at the HS level that Rover position could just as well be a LB that is fast enough to cover a slot or TE.

I also agree that as a former OL blocking a 4 man front that shaded into gaps was the hardest thing to do. You would have to go through your assignment rules and hope the correct pass protection was called by the center or QB. Again, too much thinking in HS FB is a bad thing...
 

BleedPurple13

Active member
Bingo... if we ever saw a 9 technique... we are trapping him to death all night and running underneath and there's nothing the defense can do to stop it!
Yup. You have almost 2 gaps open. Tackle coming down on the 3 technique should push him to the A gap. Even if that end comes down the line quickly, it's a huge hole. You need monsters at linebacker or 3 tech to be able to stop that.
 

cincifbfan

Well-known member
Another thing HS coaches don't utilize enough is stunting/moving linemen.

In college we ran a traditional 4 3 but are linemen were constantly slanting/angling across gaps. Especially when bringing pressure.
Bring on the Zone Blitz!! For a few seasons, I had some very athletic DEs that I'd drop into coverage.... it was phenomenal. We absolutely crushed the school's single season sack record that year! Too bad our offense was atrocious, or we would've actually won more games.
 
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