It’s the weekend, which means football! Last week we spoke a lot about the defense, learning about man-to-man and zone coverage. Today we are going to move to the other side of the ball and look at the quarterback. I am inspired this weekend by my beloved Steelers who (due to a series of unfortunate events) will be starting their 4th string quarterback. I believe in you, Charlie Batch!!!!! Um, yeah, so here are the jobs of the quarterback:
The quarterback is central to the offensive line. Calling the plays in the huddle and typically initiating the forward motion of the offense. Once the quarterback receives the snap there are five major actions that can take place.
- Spike the ball: used to stop the clock. It does cost the offense a down, but in a situation where the clock is about to elapse, spiking the ball buys precious extra time.
- Taking a knee: results in the clock continuing to run, while simultaneously allowing the offense to protect the ball from a turnover. Taking a knee typically takes place at either the end of the first half or the end of the game, as a means of ensuring a lead is maintained.
- Throw a pass: is the action most associated with a (successful) quarterback. The intention is to throw the ball to a receiver.
- A hand-off: is an attempt to hand the ball to a running back so that he may run downfield with it.
- Run the ball: is when the quarterback elects to run with the ball instead of giving it to another player on the offensive line. Often this is the result of all receivers being covered. This action is risky because injury (more likely the longer the ball is held onto) to the quarterback can be detrimental to the team.
Hopefully this has helped shed some light on the role of the quarterback in a football game. Until next week, please remember: GO STEELERS!