In football, run blocking refers to blocking defenders on a play in which the offense will run instead of passing the ball in order to gain yards. On this play, offensive players who do not receive the ball will be assigned run blocking duties.
A team’s run blocking determines the success of the run game. Unless the defensive line runs blocks well, the offensive line can clog up the holes and enter the offensive backfield.
The most talented running backs will struggle if the run blocking in front of them is poor.
A top-tier run-blocking team is able to make it incredibly easy for the running back to gain yards. In the NFL, you’ll find running backs who play well above their quality because of the run-blocking they receive.
Key Positions in Run Blocking
This section of the article will discuss several positions involved in run blocking and their assignments.
Running plays typically require the offensive line to create a hole in the defensive line for the ball carrier to run through.
Guards, tackles, and centers will have to run block defensive players depending on which hole they are targeting.
Running backs may be asked to pull and block downfield on some plays.
They will run downfield in front of the ball carrier on these plays instead of making a hole and blocking linebackers.
Tight ends are heavily involved in run blocking, as the ball is usually run to the strong side of the formation.
In general, the strong side of a formation is the one with the most players. Usually, the tight end lines up on the strong side.
It is always better to run towards the strong side since it has more players.
On almost every rushing play, the tight end must run block on the side of the field the ball carrier is moving towards.
Due to this, the tight end must lay an effective block, otherwise an unblocked defender will stand in the way of the running back.
Running blocking is the main responsibility of the fullback position, which is a dying breed in football.
Often, fullbacks play the role of lead blockers on rushing plays. This means they travel through the hole the offensive line has created and block the defender waiting on the other side.
Due to his proximity to the running back, the fullback’s blocks are often enough to impact the play.
In football, fullbacks are one of the key positions for run blocking.
That’s all you need to know about run blocking in football. Now let’s discuss double team blocks and pancake blocks.