Calling Your Vertical Pass Game Enough?

By FirstDown PlayBook on May 6, 2022
Plenty Of Vertical Passing Game Ideas In FirstDown PlayBook

The vertical pass game is essential for any offense if you plan on throwing the football. It is essential even if you don’t have a dangerous vertical threat on your roster. Without it you can almost bet that the rest of your passing game will suffer mightily.

Soon the defense is breaking up on all of your short passing game and sitting all over your intermediate routes. This makes your passing game as well as your running game frustrating, as you face eight and nine man boxes all game.

This is true even with 7on7 where there is no run threat. It’s like the linebackers and defensive backs have been taught to disregard the deep threat. Well coached linebackers and defensive backs are taught to respect the danger of a vertical route only once the receiver gets to a certain depth.

One of the most important thing to look at is are your receivers getting off the ball on the snap? Are they exploding off of the ball or is their release full of false steps with no sense of urgency? It’s the little things like this that if not coached properly will give the defense a huge edge. They have permission to sit on your routes.

Your Vertical Pass Game Problems Can Sometimes Be Solved By looking In The Mirror

Plenty Of Vertical Passing Game Ideas like This In FirstDown PlayBook

Sometimes the best place to look to solve this is in the mirror. Are you calling your vertical pass game enough? With all of the deficiencies your quarterback and your receiving corp might have the defensive coordinator is still going to take note of not only CAN you stretch the field with your vertical passing game but also, DO you stretch the field?

This is why it is important to have a vertical passing game in your attack. This means regardless of your teams talent level. Trust us when we say it will affect the secondary’s play. The only thing worse than getting beat deep is getting beat deep by a slower receiver.

As we mentioned earlier a lot of this comes from coaching take off and releases as well as effort on every vertical route that is called. Just as important is the emphasis put on running every route initially like it is a “take off” or a “go” route. Finally, the vertical threat can only exist if it is called early and periodically through out the game.

Our suggestion is to make this point of emphasis early as you are installing your passing game. Install the vertical passing game routes first. As you do this demand execution from your quarterback and receivers. Later, expect every intermediate and short route to look like it is a “go” ball. This means evaluating every route from a hitch to post this way.

The FirstDown PlayBook Vertical Concepts area is a great place to find a ton of ways to stretch the field. This package not only includes many ways to threaten vertically with three or four players but it will also show you some creative ways to get to it and ways to give your QB an out if the deep routes are not open.