Turning the zone read play into triple option from the same formation can bring added confusion to the opposing defense.
Aligning in the Shotgun Trips set, the inside slot receiver will 'orbit' motion (arcing behind the quarterback).
Except for the slot receiver, the play starts out the same as the zone read play. The offensive line will zone block, leaving the weak side defensive end unblocked.
Quarterback Has 2 Reads
Read 1 - The quarterback will read the unblocked defensive end. If he stays at home, the running back will receive the handoff.
Read 2 - If the defensive end charges down the line of scrimmage, the quarterback will keep the ball and run toward the vacated defensive end's location. He will focus on the area just beyond the line of scrimmage, and will watch for the first defender in that area. The safety or linebacker will be his second 'read.' If the second read defender commits to tackling the quarterback, he will pitch the ball to the trailing slot receiver. If the defender gets in position to take away the pitch, the quarterback will keep the ball and cut inside the defender.
After motioning behind the quarterback, the slot receiver will keep in the proper area, or 'pitch relationship' to receive the lateral from the quarterback. Proper pitch relationship is 3-4 yards deeper, and slightly behind the quarterback. The slot receiver is to continue following the quarterback down field, as he may receive the pitch several yards past the line of scrimmage.
- Work diligently on proper spacing between the quarterback and the pitch player.
- Part of the quarterback's every day drills should include pitching the ball.
- Add a play-action pass which simulates the triple option.