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Taking Away the Quarterback ‘Hot Read’ While Blitzing Cornerback and Safety

Zone Blitz Out of Cover 2 Shell Results in Sacks and Turnovers


Renegade Blitz

3-4 Defense 'Renegade' Blitz

Sean McCormick

Blitzing a cornerback and a safety while taking away the quarterback's blitz control receiver will create confusion and indecision, resulting in sacks, fumbles, and interceptions.


This blitz provides six-man defensive pressure on the quarterback, as well as accounts for the likely 'hot' receivers. It is designed to work best against the shotgun spread 2x2 receiver set.

Pre-Snap Look

The quarterback will look to see there are two deep safeties, and a base 3-4 defensive alignment.

Defensive Stemming

As the quarterback begins the snap cadence:

  • The weak side cornerback will stem in toward the slot receiver and the line of scrimmage.
  • The weak-outside linebacker will stem inward to the opposite gap of the defensive end.
  • The weak side safety will stem toward the opposite 'B' gap, aligning just inside the strong side linebacker.
  • The strong side safety will stem toward the weak side, replacing the blitzing safety.

At the Snap

When the center snaps the ball to the quarterback:

  • The strong side defensive end will rush toward the outside shoulder of the offensive tackle.
  • The nose tackle will rush the strong side 'A' gap.
  • The weak side defensive end will rush the outside shoulder of the offensive tackle, taking one step in that direction, and then dropping back into the flat for pass coverage.
  • The weak side cornerback blitzes from the outside.
  • The weak-outside linebacker blitzes the 'B' gap.
  • The weak-inside linebacker blitzes the weak side 'A' gap.
  • The weak side safety blitzes the strong side 'B' gap
  • The strong-inside linebacker will play run-first, and then drop into deep middle coverage.
  • The strong-outside linebacker will focus on the slot receiver, taking away the 'hot' read to that side.
  • The strong side corner will drop into deep third coverage.

Coaching Points

  1. Run companion defensive plays which includes stemming, and then players returning to initial positioning.
  2. Have the nose tackle and weak-inside linebacker change gap assignments to add another look.
  3. Have the strong-inside linebacker blitz, with the safety dropping into deep middle coverage.
  4. Exchange the assignments of the weak side defensive end and the weak-outside linebacker to add more confusion for the offense.
  5. Teach the strong side defensive end and the strong-outside linebacker to recognize the swing pass to the running back.
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