Slot Receiver Skills
Often considered the most underrated and under-appreciated position on the field, slot receivers can do a lot of things that the outside wide receivers can’t. These players are a vital part of any offensive playbook.
Whether he’s running an inside, outside, deep or short route, a slot receiver has to be able to run precise routes and make the most of his size and speed. They also need to be able to absorb contact and be reliable when they receive targets in the slot area of the field.
They don’t have to deal with crushing blocks like the outside receivers, but they do need to be able to seal off the defensive line from getting past them. This can mean they’ll have to chip nickelbacks, outside linebackers, and safeties, depending on what type of play they’re called on.
As a result, they’ll need to be able to move in and out of their blocker’s box quickly and efficiently when the quarterback calls them into pre-snap motion. They’ll also need to be able to carry the ball from time to time on pitch plays, reverses, and end-arounds.
Most slot receivers are drafted and signed as wide receivers, but they earn their title by having the skills needed to excel in the slot area of the field. This allows them to do a number of different things and see more targets than the average wide receiver. They’re also a great option for a team that doesn’t have a lot of big playmakers at the wide receiver position.