Rich Erdelyi’s Goal Line and Red Zone Offense

Rich Erdelyi's Goal Line and Red Zone Offense

The second talk I saw from Coach Erdelyi (the first was was his new thoughts on the shotgun Wing-T) was on goal line and red zone offense. His advice, not surprisingly, was a mix of base Wing-T standards that should work in these scenarios along with some wrinkles that are designed to attack typical goal line and red zone defenses.

Red Zone Pillars

Remember that the defense does not have to cover the full depth of the field, so this means:

  • Run your best plays. Run your best runs.
  • Counter your runs
  • Create mismatches internally and externally
  • Motion, formation, substitution. For example he will go “heavy” and bring in an extra tackle for the SE.
  • Don’t be afraid of the flank
  • Jet sweep, buck sweep, belly sweep
  • Have pass plays that will work vs. man and zone coverage
  • Consider having some gap control plays, because you likely will see gap defenses at the goal line
  • Don’t get cute.
  • Don’t screw yourself. An example would be a false start on the 1/2 yard line.

Running Plays

I’m going to focus on the set of core plays he likes to run along with their wrinkles. I’m not going to do much diagramming here.

  • Rip+ 28 Jet Sweep – Rip and Liz are his end-over, tackle-over formations. So the TE moves to the weak-side tackle position, and the tackle comes over to the usual TE position. Interestingly, I do this for all of my end-over formations because my tackles are often over the eligible receiver weight limit so I can’t keep them uncovered. “Rip+” means the FB is offset to the right. Jet sweep is “reach to playside blocking,” and he’ll use a “TAG” call sometimes which allows the playside guard and tackle to pull if nobody in their playside gap.
  • He’ll also run this to the weak side, e.g. Liz+ 28 Jet Sweep.

  • Rip+ 24 Jet Lead (diagram above) – A nice wrinkle off the jet sweep, this is an inside lead play that you can block just like belly. The wing back in jet motion must lose about 1 yard of ground as he jets (get to the toes of the FB), which shouldn’t be noticeable by the defense.

  • For gap control he likes the Jet XX (Red Jet XX) shown above. The jet back is on a 2 yard depth track to receive the first handoff, and the other wing drop steps to get on a 3 yard track to take the second handoff. He will widen the split of the TE to try to spread out the DE further.
  • 536 Blast – Another wrinkle off the jet, this is a fullback blast play that can be blocked at the line just like belly but with the non-jet back (usually in the dive back position) leading first and the jet back getting depth and leading second, kicking out first man past the play-side tackle.
  • Liz 449 Belly Sweep – This is roughly the same belly sweep that I’ve run for years. He’ll crack with the SE and have back-side guard take the corner.
  • 532 Wedge – This is just a wedge play to the FB over the RG.

Passing Play

  • Coach Erdelyi’s favorite 2 point conversion play is shown above - Twins Right 2 Pt Play (love the name!). The slot back on the twins side sets a “legal” pick about 1–2 yards in the end zone. When he turns inside he must look at the quarterback and slide his butt out, making it harder for the flat defender to come up and close on the wing running the jet / arrow. The SE runs an in route 1 yard from the back of the end zone. The CB should be in conflict and one of the three should be open. The QB does not reverse pivot on this but should just sprint out, and it is a run / pass option.