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Wreak Havoc with These Slants and Stunts | Generating Pressure

Wreak Havoc with These Slants and Stunts

There are several different slants and stunts that can be implemented to generate blocking confusion and put pressure on the offensive line. Below are our favorite ones! Stunts and defensive line slants are not used as much on the youth football level as they should be. Many coaches just tell their defenders to penetrate or to just shoot a gap. This is the man reason why these type of defenses get gutted by great offensive schemes. Here’s a question for you- how often do you have your offensive line practice picking up slants and stunts? Not very much I bet. With that said, Wreak Havoc with These Slants and Stunts:

3-4 Defense (under front): Twist Pinch 

3-4 Defense (under front): Twist Pinch 
Twist Pinch

This is a great stunt that will take away interior and off-tackle plays. The Twist side E will slant B-gap and the S will slant C-gap. This will generate blocking confusion and it will almost always leave your M backer free off of the edge. Against the TE and WB flank I do like to roll the cornerback up to match numbers. I rather roll the CB up because then I do not have to shift my linebackers and / or linemen over to match numbers (this would leave us vulnerable to the twins side). I do like playing cover 2 behind this stunt. If you decide to play cover 2 behind this, make sure your CB keys the TE, if the TE releases he knows it’s a pass and then he can drop into his flat zone. If the CB is on the boundary, he plays more of a hook to curl zone. Also, make sure your CB is tight on the line, on the outside shoulder of the W. He cannot allow himself to get hooked or sealed, as he is the primary force player.  You are somewhat vulnerable to a TE (Y) Quick Pop. However, you can have your S jam the tight-end to throw off the timing if it is a TE Quick Pop.

Coaching Points 

  • C is the primary contain player, he must always keep his outside shoulder free. On run he is responsible for contain, if it is pass, he has the flat.
  • The E and S must dip and rip through the inside shoulder of the offensive linemen they are lined up over. You don’t want them to just shoot the gap and get themselves washed down.
  • You can very well play man to man coverage behind this blitz/ stunt.
  • To the Twins side, the CB must not allow an outside release by the #1 receiver (X). He must jam and funnel him inside to defend against concepts like Scissors (Post by #1 and Corner by #2) and / or double verticals. 
  • Once the QB begins his cadence, the M will start creeping up. You don’t want him to rush from 4 yards back!
  • N will two gap the A (responsible for both A-gaps). He will shock and shed.

See Also: 3-4 Slanting Defense 

Playbook: 3-4 Defense for Youth Football 


3-5 Stack Defense: Leo Storm 

Leo Storm Blitz
Leo Storm

This is a stunt right out of my playbook. This is one of our best stunts that we use to defend against off-tackle plays. This is a stunt / blitz we love to run to the Tight-end side. Our L is called Leo and our R is called Rip. Leo Storm tells our kids that we are executing this stunt to the left side and with our Leo linebacker. If we call Rip Storm, this would be executed to the right side with our R and W backer. This is an awesome play against ISO and Power. To defend ISO (or lead) you need to pinch your defensive linemen and get the play spilled. One this stunt our L and E are both slanting down one gap. Our E slants B-gap and our L slant C-gap. This is a great way to spill the ISO outside to our looping S and scrapping M. Against Power, the FB will see pre-snap that he is going to kick-out the L, but post snap my L slants, which confuses the FB (this works all the time on the youth level). The L and E will naturally squeeze the down blocks or double teams on Power and get it spilled to out L and M. It’s my go-to answer for off-tackle attacking plays.

Coaching Points

  • N will two gap the A. This will also allow your M to be free to read and react. N will shock and shed.
  • The L and E need to dip and rip- do not get washed. Many times you will see youth football players slant themselves right out of the play.
  • I do recommend that you play man to man coverage behind this blitz. The S will play a peel technique. The peel technique means if it is pass, he will come off of his blitz path and cover the back coming on a swing pass to his side.
  • This is a stunt that your kids need to executed with full effort- half-hearted execution will get your defense beat. This play does leave you vulnerable to big plays if your kids don’t do their job.
  • Only when the QB begins his cadence does the S break his stack and cheat out over the L.

See Also: The 3-3 Stack Defense Base Rules and Blitzes 

Playbook: 3-5-3 Stack Playbook for Youth Football 


4-3 / 4-4 Defense: Sam Twist 

Stunts and slants for defensive line
Sam Twist

This is a simple Twist that can be executed at all age levels of football. This is a great stunt to defend against off-tackle and sweep plays. It’s a simple gap exchange that the vast majority of youth football offensive lines won’t be able to pick up. Pre-snap, the S shows that he is the contain player. Post-snap, he dips and rips across the OT’s face and into the B-gap. This will create blocking confusion. It’s only a two player movement that creates a ton of blocking issues for the offense. Big return on your investment.

Coaching Points 

  • S needs to dip and rip through the Offensive Tackle and anchor B-gap. He cannot just shoot to the B-gap and get washed down. Getting washed will create horizontal space for the offense.
  • This stun can be executed against any offensive formation.
  • This is a great stunt to mix in because it will throw something different at the offense and keep them guessing.
  • This Twist can be execute with any defensive linemen and linebacker. This is a defensive linemen and linebacker gap exchange- two player movement / slant.

More Stunts & Blitzes: 4-4 Defense Blitz Packages 


5-3 Defense: Razor Stunt 

Razor Stunt in Football
Razor Stunt


This Razor Stunt is one of my favorite stunts. We run something very similar out of our 3-5 Stack. This is a great stunt that will take away one side of the field. It is great against interior, off-tackle, and edge plays. It’s basically an overload blitz- we’re sending more than the offense can block. This is a blitz I like against compressed offenses. This is also a very deceptive blitz as the M shows that he is going to blitz A-gap (pre-snap), but when the ball is snapped, he is blitzing B-gap (gap exchanging with the T). I highly recommend having this blitz in your playbook. This stunt is great because the backside is still strong if a team runs away from your stunt side. Also, if the offense breaks past your pressure side defenders you will at least still have you cut back defender pursuing to the ball carrier.

Coaching Points

  • Fantastic blitz against off-tackle plays. It will completely take away one side of the formation. This great against Double TE formations.
  • N and T need to dip and rips- do not get washed.
  • Man to man coverage can be implemented, safety would have to roll down though- so it will be cover 0.
  • Defensive ends will play “peel” techniques. Peel means that if a backfield player runs a swing or release for an outside route, the Es must come off and take him.
  • When the QB begins his cadence, that is when the linebackers start creeping up. You don’t want them to give away where they are blitzing and you don’t want them to blitz from 4 yards back.

Playbook: Swarming 5-3 Defense Playbook 


6-2 Defense: Overload left & Twist Stunt Right 

Overload and Twist Stunt
Overload / Twist

Here’s another one of my favorites! This is a great play because you are executing an overload blitz to one side and a twist stunt to the other. You don’t have to run both at the same time, but it’s always fun when you do. This play is sending more than the offense can pick up. I love this blitz against compressed formations. This blitz / twist is a high risk, high reward type play. If for some reason your defenders don’t get there you could give up a big play. I mean who doesn’t like to send the house every so often?!?

Coaching Points 

  • Once the QB begins his cadence that is when the linebackers start to creep up. You don’t want them to give away where they are blitzing but you also don’t want them to blitz from 4 yards back.
  • Slanting defensive linemen must dip and rip- do not get washed.
  • M shows blitz over the B-gap, then once the ball is snapped he blitzes C-gap (as the E slants in front of him).
  • The B and S should play peel techniques in case of a RB screen or swing pass.

See Also: Cross Blitz out of the 6-2 Defense 

Related Content: Razor and Laser Defensive Line Slants