What Is a Slot Receiver?


A slot receiver is a wide receiver in an offensive formation where they are typically pre-snap between the last man on the line of scrimmage (tight end or offensive tackle) and the outside receiver. This formation was invented by former Oakland Raiders coach Al Davis in 1963 and is a strategy that he used to great success during his coaching career.

The Slot position is a unique and powerful weapon that most offenses use in the game of football, but it’s also important to understand how it works and what makes a slot receiver so special. There are a number of characteristics that make up the typical slot receiver, but they all have one thing in common: They get more chances to do their job on the field than any other wide receiver.


A good slot receiver can run very fast, so they need to be able to stay in front of their opponents while they’re in the open. This allows them to catch the ball quickly and gain separation.


Having great hands is vital for a slot receiver, as they absorb a lot of contact when they receive the ball. This can help them to get more consistent receptions, but it can also lead to injuries if they don’t have the proper technique in place.


A slot receiver needs to have good chemistry with their quarterback and have a knack for working together on route runs. They should be able to read the quarterback’s movement very well, so that they can know exactly where they need to be and when. This is especially crucial if the receiver doesn’t have a fullback or another tight end on the play to help them out.


A slot receiver can also be a blocker for the running back or wide receiver in the running game. This means that they can pick up blitzes from linebackers or secondary players and provide protection for the runner.


A Slot receiver can run just about every type of route that the quarterback has designed for them, and they should have a very good understanding of them. This is essential for them to be a successful receiver, so they need to learn all of their routes and make sure they’re doing everything correctly.

Defensive tactics

A slot receiver is usually paired with a wide receiver on passing plays, but they can also play a defensive role in certain situations, such as during a blitz or on an open play. They are often called upon to help protect the passer or help the quarterback get the ball out of the pocket quickly.

They can also be a part of the special teams unit, as they are usually in a position that calls for them to do more than just receive the football. A slot receiver is also a valuable resource for the offense by providing a strong decoy on running plays, which can help to open up the outside.