Glossary

Here is a Scouting glossary:

Height/Weight – A player listed at 6045, 232 is 6’4 5/8 and 232 pounds.  Someone long ago decided players height should be measured in 8ths of an inch.  5110 is just 5’11.  5113 is 5’11 3/8.  For the sake of simplicity, I round up and down.

COD – Change of direction

LOS – Line of Scrimmage

POA – Point of attack…this is the spot of the defense where a running play is supposed to go. A good defensive player will be strong or stout at the POA and hold up the OL or lead blocker, thus causing the RB to alter his route or slow down.

QAB – Quickness, Agility, Balance. This is a key term in regard to judging a player’s movement skills. Football is a herky-jerky game. There are a lot of moments in a game when a player has to make awkward movements. Maybe he’s reaching to make a block. Or tightroping the sideline. Or changing direction while pursuing a shifty RB. Scouts need to be able to rate a player’s ability to move under these type circumstances.

PBU – Pass break-up

PD – Pass defensed.  Same thing as PBU.

INT – Interception

FF – Forced fumble

FR – Fumble recovery

TFL – tackle-for-loss

UDFA – Undrafted free agent.

Hands Catcher – A WR who will reach out and catch the ball away from his body.

Pluck/Snatch – When a WR can quickly move his hands into the air and grab a pass.

TRF – Transfer…players who transfer from one college to another.

One Gap – Defensive system where DL attack off the ball and cover a single gap.

Two Gap – Defensive system where interior DL are each responsible for two gaps.  Requires bigger, stronger players.

In-Line Blocker – When a player, generally a TE, is better at blocking players right at the LOS rather than in space. Generally these type players are bigger and do better when the block requires more strength than subtelty.

Blocking in Space – This is when an offensive player has to go after a defender, usually a OLB or DB, in space. It requires the offensive player to be more mobile and also to be able to hit a moving target. A lot of OL start running and have poor body control. It is then easy for the defender to side-step them and try to get back into the play.

Blitz – This is when a defender who isn’t a DL rushes the passer. The concept is generally to outnumber the blockers the offense leaves in to protect the QB. The element of surprise is also crucial.

Zone Blitz – This is when a non-DL rushes the passer and a DL drops back into coverage and the defense plays zone pass coverage. Very common now.

Motor – The way to describe how hard a guy plays. Not only was Dwight Freeney explosive, but he had a non-stop motor. This is an extreme compliment. You may also see a guy referred to as “high motor”.

Looks like Tarzan, Plays like Jane – Great description. Unfortunately there are guys who do not have good motors. They are lazy and inconsistent. The only thing that makes them the least bit interesting is that they have a very good body or they have good raw ability.

Explosive – Very hard word to explain. It means different things to different positions. You want DL to have explosive quickness. You want WR/DBs to be explosive in and out of cuts. You want LBs to be explosive hitters. You want to see guys do something in such a dynamic manner that it really jumps out at you.

RS – Return Specialist…ususally is both a KOR and PR.

KOR – Kickoff Returner

PR – Punt Returner

Workhorse RB – A player who is productive, but not dynamic. It is not an insult at all. Emmitt Smith was a workhorse RB, but also had some dynamic ability. Compare that to a guy like Trung Canidate. He was an explosive RB. However, he couldn’t be the workhorse. All the speed in the world won’t help you if you struggle to learn the playbook and you can’t consistently run for 4 yds a carry.

Dances/Dancer – Some players get the ball in their hands and begin trying to fake every defender out with fancy moves. This is dancing. And it is not a good thing. The best players will begin running and then use moves when needed.

More fast than quick – Should be self-explanatory. Some players take a second to get get going, but run very well once they have a little momentum.

Gets down the LOS – DL have to pursue the football on plays away from them. One part of this is chasing plays down the line of scrimmage. A fast or quick DL can get in on plays away from him and even still come up with a TFL if they really move well.

23 Responses to Glossary

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  2. Peter Matarazzo says:

    Great site. I am probably on it daily. I’ve had a chance to take some individual scouting courses with Wes Bunting of the National Football Post and I’m just an avid football junkie and I write for Bleacher. I would like to take my passion to the next level. What I would like to know is if you have a need for an intern type for your website. I would work for absolutely free of charge for as long as I needed to and no task would be too small. I appreciate your time just for reading this. I do want you to know that it’s not a joke by any means and again, I thank you for your time.

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