Power out of the Pistol Formation

This power out of the pistol formation is drawn up a little bit differently than your traditional power play. Instead of pulling a guard we utilize a kick-out block with our jet motion player. Usually a fullback or guard kick out or lead block. This is also very similar to an ISO play. The left wing back (3) lead blocks and gets on the outside linebacker. We do like to get a double team of that defensive tackle because they are usually a pretty big and tough defender. We will have our PST (T) and (TE) double team him. If the DT slants inside, the (TE) should continue to the middle linebacker. This play is executed to the (TE) and (3) flank.

Power Out of the Pistol Formation- Positions and Blocking Assignments

This pistol formation features five down linemen, two wing-backs (3) & (4), a split-end (SE), tight-end (TE), QB (1), and  half-back (2). There are several reasons why we love to utilize at leas one wing back. Wing-backs generate conflict for the defense. I personally love using our wing-backs in the blocking game.

Center (C): Double team the nose guard (N) with the left guard (G). If you are getting double A-gap defenders, the center is to block the back-side A-gap defender.

Right Guard (G): Work onto linebacker unless he has a defender inside or over him.

Right Tackle (G): Block defensive tackle.

Left Guard (T): Double team nose guard (N) with the center. If the center can handle the nose guard (N) have the guard get right onto a linebacker.

Left Tackle (T): Block defensive tackle (DT) with (TE).

Tight-end (TE): Double team defensive tackle (DT) with the left tackle. If the DT slants away, go get the middle linebacker.

Split-end (SE): You can have the (SE) stalk block, run off, or cheat his split in and try to block the middle safety.

(1): Catch the pistol snap, turn left (one step to the left), hand the football to the (2), then carry out a fake to the right. The ball is snapped just as the motioning (4) cross in front of the QB.

(2): One lateral step left, take hand-off from the QB, get downhill and look to cut off of the (4) kick-out block.

(3): Fold, lead block. Block the outside linebacker.

(4): Motion across the formation, kick-out the edge defender who in this case is the (E).  The motion player cannot go or lean forward until the ball is snapped. This motion should be at 80% speed.


There are several different ways you can execute this play. This play is easy to implement and it works very well in youth football. The pistol snap and the motion timing are the only aspects that take some practice. It is critical that the center executes a good snap and  the QB catches the football first (before handing off). This play is basically a mix of power and ISO scheme.

See Also: Utilizing Wing backs in your Offense 

See Also: QB Iso Play out of the Pistol Spread 

See Also: Pistol Playbook for Youth Football 

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