Strike Nickel is a fast and aggressive Nickel formation, perfect for situations where you want to assert yourself against your opponents passing game without backing off and playing soft. Strike Nickel is fast because it features three linebackers instead of the traditional two found in standard Nickel formations. It's aggressive because the slot corner plays up on the line, in position to blitz the quarterback.
The aggressiveness of most Strike Nickel plays make it fairly well balanced against the run as well as the pass. Although it probably won't stand up to continuous power running up the middle, it can be a good match for most singleback and three wide receiver sets. You probably don't want to use it against four wide receivers though, as it will probably force at least one linebacker into unfavorable matchup. One other thing to watch out for is an opponent attacking the left side (right side from the offense's perspective). With no nickel cornerback on this side the formation is a little unbalanced. Most plays take this into consideration, but if the offense loads up blockers to their right you will want to shift your linemen and/or linebackers to prevent easy gains.
Nothing much to say about player assignments. The defensive linemen and linebackers are just where you would expect, and the safeties line up as they do in most base formations. The #1 corner is isolated on the left, with the #2 CB on the outside right and #3 in the slot, where help is available for coverage and he can spend much of his time blitzing.
A solid base play out of the Strike Nickel formation. The slot cornerback blitzes to add pressure, the other defensive backs play zone coverage against deep passes, and the linebackers play man to attack the run and chase tight ends and running backs laterally across the field. The variety of coverages and blitzes employed create confusion for the opposing offense while maintaining good balance against both pass and run.
An unusual zone blitz out of a Nickel formation. Both right side cornerbacks blitz while the right defensive end slides out to cover the flats. Zone coverages by the linebackers and defensive backs blanket the rest of the field. While this blitz does not bring a whole lot of pressure, it does so while providing strong pass coverage even in the area where the cornerbacks blitz from. Upon seeing the blitz the QB may panic and get rid of the ball sooner than intended or throw into coverage he wasn't expecting.
One of my best INT creating defenses to date. Sophisticated zone coverages move defenders in multiple directions across the field to confuse the opposing offense. Maximum zone coverage to the outsides makes it difficult for offenses to conserve time on the clock. One of my best defenses for red zone passing situations.
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