ITP Glossary: Trap Block

Football is littered with specialized terminology. From punt gunner to climbing the pocket, commentators rarely get to explain everything you need to know before the next play. Inside The Pylon’s glossary was developed to give fans a deeper understanding of the game through clear explanations, as well as image and video examples. Please contact us with any terms or phrases you’d like to know more about.

Trap Block

The trap block is a run blocking assignment that pulls a blocker to the play side of the formation to block an uncovered defender. Most of the linemen block down in one direction, while the trap blocker flows in the opposite direction toward the defender. The defender is intentionally left unblocked by the rest of the offensive personnel, allowing the trap blocker to move in from the opposite side of the formation and take him out of the play.Trap Block XO (IMG1)Here, the Indianapolis Colts come out in 22 personnel, with a tight end to each side of the offensive line and the backs in i-formation. The Buffalo Bills align in a 4-3 under front, with defensive end Mario Williams (#94) the target of the trap block:Colts Trap Block (IMG2)Strong side tight end Dwayne Allen (#83) intentionally leaves Williams unblocked, and moves immediately to the second level to block safety Aaron Williams (#23). Colts left guard Lance Louis (#60) pulls behind the offensive line to trap Williams while the rest of the offensive line blocks down away from Williams.

Louis makes just enough contact with Williams to keep him out of the play, fullback / tight end Jack Doyle (#84) then leads through the hole to block linebacker Nigel Bradham (#53). Frank Gore hits the hole and runs for a 9-yard gain before being tackled by linebacker Preston Brown (#52).Stanford Trap Block XO (IMG3)

In this example, Stanford comes out with 11 personnel on the field, with tight end Austin Hooper (#18) on the right side of the formation and two receivers in a stack alignment on the left. Running back Remound Wright (#22) is to the left of quarterback Kevin Hogan (#8) in the shotgun. USC aligns in a base 3-4 defense, with outside linebacker / defensive end Scott Felix (#47) the target of the trap block. Stanford Trap Block (IMG4)At the snap Hooper does not block Felix, instead moving upfield to block inside linebacker Anthony Sarao (#56). Left guard Joshua Garnett (#51) pulls to the right side to trap Felix.

Felix comes up the field, trying to constrict the lane against Wright and close in for a tackle. However, Garnett comes around in time, trapping Felix and creating a hole for Wright who gains 5 on the play before being tackled by cornerback Jonathan Lockett (#23).

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Ryan Dukarm wrote this entry. Follow Ryan on Twitter @DBRyan_Dukarm.

Play diagrams powered by XO Wizard.

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