5 Sets for Success – Starter Defensive Tips

Top 5 Sets for Success — Defense

Improving your defense means having a solid package of plays that show the offense different looks depending on game situations. Disguising your defense should be able to keep the offense on their heels, and you can mix up your play calls. You can either play an aggressive style that can force turnovers but let up big plays, or use a conservative defense that gives up underneath but prevents long passes. As long as your red zone defense is solid, you can give up lots of yards but limit points by the offense. Make sure to start out with a solid run-stopping game plan; if you can’t stop the run easily, it opens up the rest of your defense to attack. We use our best 11 athletes on the field and try to find a formation/package that puts them in the best position to make plays!

5. Man Blitz
4. Zone Blitz
3. Base Zone
2. Base Man
1. Run Defense

5. Man Blitz

Example: DB Blitz

Pro Tip: Always play deep to short with your safety in man blitz situations. 

Bringing pressure from a man-to-man front usually diminishes your safety help over the top. In this situation, your corners should be back and giving the WRs some cushion. This will let the QB get the ball out short, but if he holds it or misses a hot read, he is going to take a hit. Remember to add press coverage to some of your blitzes to throw off the timing of certain routes. If a WR can’t get a free release he won’t be the QB’s hot read option. However, this leaves your defense vulnerable to the deep ball if the WR can get off the bump, so make sure you know how long it will take your blitzes to get home! We usually leave the HB uncovered and concede a short throw to the flat. On third and 20, a 5-yard gain to the flat means the offense is still punting.

4. Zone Blitz

Example: DB Blitz 2

Pro Tip: Dropping a defensive lineman into a QB spy can also help stop quick throws over the middle.

The zone blitz is a tremendous way to confuse QBs who are struggling to read your defense. The key is to bring pressure from one side of the defense while dropping players in zones to the other side. The QB will often look to get the ball out quickly when he sees the pressure coming and not realize that the defense dropped on the opposite side of the field. To maximize the effectiveness of these blitzes, we user-control the weakest area of the coverage since we can cover more ground. Most opponents steer away from throwing into a user-covered area if they respect your skill in making plays on the ball. Make sure to use the same fronts and blitzing angles and just mix up the zone and man looks behind them.

3. Base Man

Examples: 2 Man Under, Cover 1

Pro Tip: Dropping a lineman into a hook or buzz zone can shut down some favorite man-beating routes!

For most teams, man-to-man is best when mixed in with zone defenses. Some more aggressive players use teams that have solid cover corners and can play heavy man-to-man. These tend to be more aggressive defenses and can really stress an opponent who doesn’t have elite talent to win one-on-one battles. If you are tired of being dinked and dunked by your opponent, try going to man to lock them up. Getting beat in the seams and to the corner can be frustrating with zone coverage, and man can really lock these favorite game plans up! Look for teams with two solid 90-plus man coverage rated corners, such as the NY Jets.

2. Base Zone

Examples: Cover 2, Cover 3, Cover 4

Pro Tip: Varying between a Cover 3 and Cover 3 Buzz can give your opponent different looks while keeping you in your comfort zone. 

ZFarls’s style is to play back on the first few drives of the game and give his opponents a false sense of confidence. He likes to use a three-down line and just allow them to rush organically. Although his opponents can move the ball early, it forces them to use long drives (more than 10 plays) to even get into field goal range. ZFarls considers it a win if he has given up fewer than 10 points to his opponents at halftime and has seen their full scheme. In the second half, he mixes in the pressure when his opponents think they have time, and he has great knowledge of what plays his opponents are comfortable running. By controlling a linebacker early in the game, he can keep an eye on the TE, whom most players use over the middle, and prevent himself from sneaking up with a safety and getting burned! This style works great early in the season when most players don’t have many great blitzes. If you come out in Cover 4, you can use your quick audibles to access Cover 2, Cover 3, and 2 Man Under! This gives you great flexibility before the snap.

1. Run Defense
Examples: 5-2 Normal, Cover 3

Pro Tip: Using “show blitz” from most base sets gives your defense a Bear front, which can lock up inside runs! 

Our run defense is usually made from a Cover 3 base that brings the safety down into the box to make an inverted Cover 2. Our run defense is balanced to all gaps and we user-control the safety and look to attack the ball carrier on inside runs. On outside runs, we contain the play by keeping him wide and will attempt to engage with a blocker, which can free up one of our other defenders to make the tackle. This is a solid football concept that works consistently. If the offense brings out extra weight like a Tackle Over formation, simply slide the line towards the extra tackle. The offense will be very weak to the other side and won’t have much success going away from their strength.

Related posts:

  1. Madden NFL 13 Tips – 5 Sets for Success on Offense
  2. Top 5 Defensive Formations in Madden NFL 13
  3. Madden NFL 25 Defensive Tips: Stopping Five-WR Sets
  4. Top 5 Defensive Teams in Madden NFL 13 to Help You Win NOW!
  5. Top 5 Ways to Read Coverage in Madden NFL 13

0 thoughts on “5 Sets for Success – Starter Defensive Tips

  1. “Always play deep to short with your safety in man blitz situations”

    What does that mean? Also, are you supposed to pick one of each type of play to set as an audible?

    • Deep to short means, always start back and protect deep before moving up close to cover short routes (flat) This way, you don’t let up the deep ball to stop a 5 yard route. It is one of the first ways to get better when playing user control. Yes, our eguides set up each of these as an audible so you can access them at the line everytime.

    • Crash the line and contain the edge rusher where the sweep is going. QB spy the other edge rusher and user control him to go for the tackle. Very effective method. Keep in mind that even though your user controlled edge rusher more than likely will get blocked, that is one less blocker you have to worry about freeing up one of your other defensive players to go for the tackle behind the LOS. Good luck.

  2. Great stuff quick question how would you stop the TE pass over the middle seam..I play this guy and when I get him down 4th he uses ace set and have both TE streak if i user check one he throws to the other with QB pass lead to open space my MLB or safety just let him catches it if i click on the player TE gets extra time to make a break up field

    • Yes one of the most annoying things in this game especially when they audible out of there base set. Only to have there wide-outs line up as the tight ends.

    • This is very annoying and cheezy, but you don’t see farls or gibs use it at all so you know it’s bush league. I just run cover 4 and bracket the TE that I’m not user covering.

    • its a term for you switching off to the defender and actully playing the def with the anolog stick yourself seems hard but putting the defender in an open area in the def can help if pressure is applyed.

  3. Ea made it easy for pass plays just holding y on 360 for int and the curl rt how to get heat fast on an and still have good coverage I use giants or multi playbook

  4. i am a huge giants fan so i usually play with them. How do you suggest stopping tightends like vernon davis and jimmy graham with the gmen defense?

  5. hi all, just started playing this game and i am hooked!! my and my friend play every nite. i play SF and he plays NO. we have some good games but i could shut down Graham it would be better. he always go to Graham and 9 times out of 10 will help him keep the drive alive, aggravating because i know where he going but cant stop him. usually up the middle how can i stop him???? thanks

  6. also i can’t throw consistantly against him, i do try route changes and the line but still not reliable. what i did discover last nite is having Gore come out the backfield on a curl. but any slants, post, curls very dangerous. like i said i just started playing about 3 weeks ago so sorry for the newb questions. thanks

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