Flex Stretch is probably my favorite new running play in Madden 2005. The I Form-Twin Flex formation tends to push defenses into man coverages to match up with the wide receivers on the left side and not over cover the empty right side, and this opens up big opportunities to break big runs down the sidelines. All you need is a back with good acceleration, a tight end who can hold up at the point of attack and a fullback with enough range to pull outside and knock out a linebacker.

I Form-Twin Flex - Flex Stretch

This is also a pretty nice running play to use against defenses that like to bring blitzes up the middle. Because the play ends up going wide a defender rushing right up the gut can end up taking himself right out of the play, getting stuck in the mass of bodies of the offensive and defensive linemen. The play is also a nice one for people who like cutback runs, useful for situations where the defense is spread despite the unbalanced formation.

Despite its great qualities, every play has weaknesses and Flex Stretch is not an exception. A base defense which stacks the TE side by shifting either the D-line or linebackers will do a pretty good job containing the play, and occasionally making a short tackle for loss. If the defense uses this strategy putting the flanker in motion may help shake things up to create openings. Otherwise moving the FB and settling for a dive inside may be a decent fall back option.

Player Assignments

Position Action
O-Line, TE, SE and Flanker Run Block
QB Handoff to RB
FB Lead Off Right
RB Shuffle Step - Sprint Right

See the Madden Playbook Guide for a description of these symbols.

Blocking Assessment

The key to this run is patience. If your halfback just takes the handoff and sprints to the outside the play will not be very effective, as he'll outrun the block of his FB and allow the LBs to flow smoothly in pursuit. Instead, take the ball at about 80% speed, letting the FB get outside in front to get a solid shot at the strong side LB. In addition, keeping your HB under control early allows better opportunities to cutback inside the right tackle, either against over-pursuit or zone defenses. It also sucks the LBs inside where they are more likely to get caught up in traffic, allowing the HB to burst to the outside unmolested.




Contact Arkaein with any comments or questions regarding the Monstrous Madden Playbook.