The Slant Arrow & Slant Wheel ConceptErick Streelman
Today we are going to continue our series of posts on Quick Game by looking at Orange, the Slant Arrow Concept and Orange Wheels, the Slant Wheel Concept. Let’s get into it!
Let’s start with the mindset of our QB. This, like most of the routes in the quick game is a mirrored route. So, the first thing our QB has to do is identify leverage and choose the side of the field that he is going to work. This can be based on leverage, or defensive alignment, or where his best WR is, or which CB we have identified as weak.
This is an important point that I have made before but I want to repeat it. Once the QB picks one side, he can’t come back to the other side of the field. The progression is Slant, Arrow, Check Down. So, That means that even if the X is running wide open, if he is looking to the right, you can’t expect him to see a wide open X or H on the other side of the field. Teach him to stick with his first read and if it’s not there come to his RB.
Like most of the routes in the quick game, this is a 0 step drop. Pick your side of the field, open up your back foot, and read Slant to Arrow.
WR COACHING POINTS
Orange is pretty straight forward for the WRs. The Z and the X have a 5 step slant. This is a little bit different than the 3 step slant that we run on RED.
On Orange, we teach a 5 step slant. You have to push it to 5 steps because it gives the arrow room to come underneath the break of the slant route and it makes a clear picture for the QB.
Teach your Z and X to push 5 steps and then break flat. That is an important point. When you break flat you give the defenders less of a chance to undercut the route. Kids have a tendency to want to cut more vertically on their break, so you have to coach flat flat flat.
The arrow route is pretty simple. It’s just like the route we run on BLACK I teach our guys to aim at 6 yards on the sideline and look over their outside shoulder. If they get to the sideline and don’t have the ball, I tell them to sit down and find open space.
THE SLANT WHEEL CONCEPT
The Slant Wheel concept is an obvious variation on Orange. Everything remains the same as Orange, except your H and Y are going to turn up the sideline as soon as they get to the numbers. Teach your guys to look over their outside shoulder just like they do on the arrow route. This will influence the defenders and potentially get them to jump the arrow, opening up the wheel route.
WHEN TO CALL THE SLANT ARROW AND THE SLANT WHEEL CONCEPT
Orange and Orange Wheel are great against Man. The crossing action of the Slant and the Arrow creates a natural picking action. If the defense is playing Cover 1, I would run Orange Wheels all day. I don’t know of many high school linebackers that can run with the slot on a wheel route up the sideline.
Every route in the system works against Cover 3 and Orange is no different. As the LB flies to the flat, the slant should be open behind him. I love to call Orange Wheel vs Cover 3. We usually get the Slant, but we can also get the wheel up the sideline. It turns into a back shoulder throw in front of the sinking CB.
My favorite time to call Orange is on the goaline. You are almost guaranteed to get Man Coverage. The natural picking action should open up either the slant or the arrow. You can even teach your X and Z to “accidentally” run into the LB as they run their slant routes. If you have a big Y or H you can call Orange Wheel and throw a jump ball to the wheel route toward the back pylon.
The only time I don’t really like Orange is against Cover 2. The slant could break open but the CB sitting in the flat will disrupt the arrow route. I would rather call Red versus Cover 2.
The bottom line is that Orange can and does work in a variety of situations. It’s n easy read and an easy throw. Teach your QB to choose his side of the field and throw it to the first open guy in the progression and you will have a lot of success with this route.