Today's Tidbit... Nine Men in the Box
Here’s a great photo from 1951 with Oregon on offense and Idaho on defense.
Running Len Casanova’s Modern T formation offense, Oregon sent the left halfback in motion to the right. The QB took the snap, turned right, and either gave to the diving right halfback or faked the handoff and dropped back.
Idaho has nine men on the line of scrimmage; two defensive halfbacks are eight to ten yards off the line of scrimmage. Clearly, the defensive play caller favors plugging gaps rather than defending in depth, and it looks like the approach will work on this play - if the QB hands off on the dive.
The key point, however, is that football was so run-oriented at the time that defenses with nine men on the line were unremarkable.
Subscribe for free and never miss a story. You can also support this site with a paid subscription to receive additional content or check out my books here.