View Full Version : Another Zone thread
10-17-2006, 02:00 PM
I know probably half of all threads on this board are about how to use Zone defense, but can someone of you experts out there give me your top 3 (or more) tips for using the zone defense?
I'm not just calling random zone plays, I'm using ones approptioate to the situation, and I still get beat almost every time. I get beat long with cover 3's, TE's tear me up in the short middle in cover 2's. All my defensive starters have at least decent awareness (most over 80, a couple in the low-mid 70's), and they're still out of position, dropping coverage or ignoring guys in their zones, and whatnot. They also have good speed, so it's not like they're just getting out-ran.
What are some to-the-point tips you can give me for effective zone defense?
10-17-2006, 03:32 PM
If you are getting beat by one or two players only, man them up with someone, so you have a man/zone combo. I like the 2-4-5 cover 3, and then I will sometimes man the LB's on the line to cover the main threats. If you manually move them out on passing downs, they won't know if it is coverage or a wide blitz, which is also effective from this set since they won't reset when you change players.
Also use cover 4s, but man up the outside recivers and then coverage audible up to split the safetys wide and put a DT in hook zone and a LB in a deep zone. Now it is a cover 3 man/zone combo with help on the deep outsides. you could also go into a 9 or 11 man coverage easily from this and confuse them by mixing it in with your other zones/zone blitzes.
10-17-2006, 05:11 PM
What are some specific plays you can suggest that have Man/Zone mixed coverages already set, like you mentioned?
10-18-2006, 12:14 AM
the only one I use regularly is the 335 3 deep man under, and freeze the D. I will make the others.
10-18-2006, 11:58 AM
Well...obviously down and distance and your opponent's playcalling tendencies play a roll in what zone you play. I personally get beat often with the cover 3 deep. It seems like the AI of the DB's fails on this play. If you're getting beat over the middle with the cover 2, then use your MLB to "cheat" back a little bit. One thing that I like to do at times is put in a manual blitz with my weak side LB when the defense has the ball on the left hash mark because people are reluctant to throw to the flats to the short side of the field and then accompany the manual blitz with a zone D. If you blitzer gets in and forces an off balance throw, you have a better chance of a pick in zone than in man D. I only use cover 3 when I think my opponent is gonna throw a corner route or if he's beating me with TE post routes.....also, for whatever reason, cover 3 defense is good against the inside run, the MLB often times shoots the gap and blows the play up....why? I'm not too sure...lol....
10-25-2006, 04:19 PM
DO you play with Chicago? Because I do, and I've witnessed the exact same thing with my zones. I was a beast with the zones in 06 and ran zones 85% of the time. Now I run man about 90% of the time because of the zones weaknesses. Its really pissed me off, but there's good news. For some reason after the last update, I've noticed that the secondary defends a LOT better and the zones are working more often. SO give it another try. Now if you don't play with the Bears then disregard this. But I do agree that Cover 4 works the best. Leave cover 3's alone, cause even if they cover it they stay behind the receiver and he still catches the ball. Also cover 2 zones work nice vs short stuff, flats, and the middle; just remember that you can still get beat deep.
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