The Slot receiver is one of the most important cogs in the offensive blocking wheel. This position requires some of the same skills as outside receivers, but also has some unique abilities. A slot receiver’s role is especially important on outside running plays.
Slot receivers line up slightly off the line of scrimmage. They chip outside linebackers and safeties. In addition to running routes, they may serve as pass catcher or carry the ball like a running back.
Slot receivers are sometimes called into the pre-snap motion, giving the quarterback a read on defense. This gives the slot receiver room to run the route, which is vital for success.
Slot receivers are very agile and flexible, so they’re ideal for passing games. However, they aren’t expected to deal devastating blows. Rather, they need to be elusive, have good hands, and be able to dip and duck in between coverage.
Often considered to be the offense’s third best receiver, a slot receiver must know how to properly position himself to get the pass. To do this, he must have a great understanding of the field. And he must be on the same page as the quarterback.
While the Slot receiver’s position is less important than that of an outside receiver, it’s still a crucial part of the game. If the quarterback has to make a quick decision, the slot receiver can help keep him from making a mistake.
When the quarterback has the ball, the Slot receiver can be used as a big decoy. He can snare the ball without worrying about crushing blocks or getting jumped.