Slot Receivers in the NFL


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In the NFL, a slot receiver is a wide receiver that lines up slightly in behind the line of scrimmage. The position got its name because it typically lines up between the last defensive end or tight end on the line of scrimmage and another wide receiver. Some teams have specialized receivers that play in the slot, while others use them as one of several options on their offensive units.

To be an effective slot receiver, a player must have excellent hands and speed. He must be able to run just about any route on the field and be precise with his timing. He must have great chemistry with the quarterback, and this is made even more important when he lines up in the slot because he is closer to the line of scrimmage than other wide receivers.

Because of their pre-snap alignment, slot receivers must also be strong blockers. They must be able to pick up blitzes by linebackers and secondary players, and they must be able to seal off the outside on running plays that are designed to go to the outside part of the field.

Some players even act as running backs on some types of plays, especially pitch and reverse plays. This is an important role for any wide receiver to fill, but it’s particularly crucial for a slot receiver because of his positioning on the field and his ability to catch the ball quickly.

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