Defensive Line in the Miami 4-3 Defense

May 27, 2022 0 Comments

The Miami 4-3 Defense was created by Coach Jimmy Johnson and his staff at the University of Miami in the mid-1980s. Its original purpose was to stop the Wishbone Option offense that was grinding teams into dust at the University of Oklahoma, under Coach Barry Switzer. In 2008 at Prince George High School, we decided to implement this defense. We felt that it best fit our personnel. One of the greatest benefits of the defense is that, although it creates a 4-man defensive front, we really only needed two – or even one – true Defensive Linemen to be run it.


The Miami 4-3 front includes two Defensive Ends and two Defensive Tackles. We declare our strength to the Tight End. For the purposes of this article, we will work against a Pro-I set, with a Tight End and flanker to one side and a split receiver to the other side. In the Over front, Weak End will align in a 5-technique, that is outside shoulder of the Offensive Tackle. The Strong End will align in a 9-technique, outside shade of the Tight End. The weak Defensive Tackle (we call him the Nose) aligns in a Weak Shade, or shaded weak on the Center. The strong Defensive Tackle will align in a strong 3-technique, outside shade of the Guard. In our base defense, these defenders are gap-responsible. The 3-technique handles B-gap strong, while the Nose takes A-gap weak. The ends are responsible for C gap weak and D gap strong. We do NOT use the Ends for ufabetบนมือถือ contain! They are spill players in our aggressive style of defense.

Our Defensive Ends are not typical defensive linemen. They must be able to contain the Quarterback, take on pulling linemen, and drop into zone pass coverage through our blitz packages. We will use players that are more traditionally linebackers at these spots. Our only true linemen are the Tackles. If you do not want to flop the linemen to strength, then the Tackles need to be able to play both a 3-technique and a 1-technique. We prefer this, as a player can get comfortable playing with his inside hand down. However, if you only have one true Tackle, you can use a quicker “wrestler” type player at the 1-technique Nose. This allows us to have even more speed on the field.