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A Quick Explanation of the Veer by Hugh Wyatt

A Quick Explanation of the Veer by Hugh Wyatt

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Published by: adamsjem on Jul 30, 2009
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06/27/2010

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A QUICK EXPLANATION OF THEVEER
 
 by Hugh Wyatt***********
I am taking the advice that I give to my kids at the start of everyseason. "There is no such thing as a dumb question at football practice, if you'reconfused, then there are probably 5 others that are confused as well." I playedfootball for 15 years and have coached for 6, been to high school and college clinicsthroughout Illinois and read hundreds of football books in my life and I still don'tunderstand exactly what VEER means. I always hear people talk about running theveer, or veer blocking or that they run a split back veer or the veer option. I don'twant to sound ignorant, but is there a specific VEER OFFENSE or is this a genericterm used by coaches across the country for different schemes they use. Don't wantto waste your time, but I was sincerely curious and always trying to learn. Thanks
 This is not a stupid question. The veer is an offense, a formation, and a play, or, actually,a couple of plays.It was invented by Bill Yeoman, in 1965, while he was head coach at the University of Houston, and it is still often referred to as the Houston Veer.It introduced to the game of football the concept of a triple option - the idea of reading(eliminating the need for blocking) two different defensive people, and doing one of three possible things depending on what those two defensive people did.The Houston Veer is now often referred to as the "split-back" veer, because in the original"veer" formation, the two running backs were split - one behind each guard.There is normally one tight end as shown above, but sometimes two. Sometimes the widereceivers are deployed in a "pro" set as shown above, but sometimes both wide on theside opposite the tight end, in a "twins" formation.It attacked the 5-2 defense so in fashion back then by taking large line splits, wideningthe defensive tackles and then diving a back inside one of them.
For example, in its simplest form, running the "true triple option" or "Inside veer"play to a tight end side...
The back on the playside would dive, and the far back would sprint to playside as anoption pitch man.They would double the nose man, and the playside offensive tackle would release insideto block the inside LBer, much as he would on our trap play.
 
The defensive tackle was left unblocked
out there, and the idea was for the QB toextend the ball into the dive back's pocket while "reading" the defensive tackle. That divehit fast! Unless the DT crashed down to tackle the dive, the QB had a "give" read, and hegave the ball to the dive man (Option "1" in the diagram). If defenses couldn't stop this play, it was lights out. They would see an awful lot of that dive for the rest of the game. Itwas not uncommon in the early days of the veer to see a dive back run a long sprint to theend zone untouched.But if the tackle did close down to stop the dive, that took care of him without anyonehaving to block him, and the QB pulled the ball out of the dive back's arm-over-arm pocket and kept it, continuing on down the line to his next "read", on the defensive end.The defensive end had also been widened by a rather large split by the tight end.
Thedefensive end was left unblocked
, just like the defensive tackle, The Tight end wouldrelease outside the Defensive End, and "arc block" (the "arc" describing his path)whoever was responsible for tackling the pitch man (the strong safety - "SS" - in thediagram) should the QB pitch the ball.The wideout on the playside would "stalk" block the corner back. That means he wouldrelease hard off the ball, "pushing" the corner (who was responsible for covering him inthe event of a pass) until he "broke down" (showing that he recognized that it was a run)and then the wideout would break down, too, and "stalk" the corner, or as Darrell Royalliked to put it, "play cutting horse", staying between the defender and the play.The QB, meanwhile, would option the DE. If the DE attacked him, he would pitch(option "3"), but otherwise he would turn up in the seam created between the defensivetackle and the defensive end (option "2").The backs line up behind the guards because if they were to line up any wider, it would be difficult to get into a good pitch relationship with the QB on an option play to theother side.The line play of a veer team is aggressive. The linemen are up on the ball with a lot oweight forward in their stances. Many veer coaches have advocated four-point stances.A good veer attack is obviously quarterback-intensive, with all the risks that implies, andeven with the talent, it takes a lot of work. There is a lot of precision involved - preciseline splits, and precise "tracks" for the dive backs to run (since the QB never looks at thedive back - right from the snap he is watching that defensive tackle, and he has to be ableto depend on that dive back being at the precise place at the precise time). You won't besuccessful running the veer if you are not a detail person.The play shown and described above is very basic. As defenses adjusted to cope with thethreat of the triple option, veer teams had to devise all sorts of blocking schemes to copewith them.

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