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As a young quarterback playing pee wee football, one of the first pass plays I learned was the tight end “pop” pass. It was a quick hitting play- action pass off of a dive play. From what I can remember we ran it from the straight-T formation made famous in Ohio by Woody Hayes. After faking to the fullback, the quarterback stops and fires the ball to the tight end who simply releases from the line of scrimmage and looks for the ball just after he cleared the linebackers who are filling downhill on the dive play to the fullback. It was a very short pass, yet the yardage it gained on the seam created in the defense allowed for big plays.
This simple play remains effective today, and is making its way into spread offenses that use the read game. Teams are using it as a packaged run-pass option with the quarterback making his decision to give the run or throw the pass based on a post-snap read on the linebacker. They are also calling it as a pass to complement the power read/inverted veer and zone read plays….read more
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