Speed option is a good way to get the ball on the edge in a hurry without a lot of installation time. However, it’s also easy to coach against and defend. So for coaches that can’t put in 30 different blocking schemes, we need an alternative
A quick alternative for us that doesn’t require a whole lot of teaching is the addition of a shovel option off our speed option play. Now, there’s many different types of shovel passes out of the shotgun. You can shovel to slots, wings, backs, or tight ends. We choose to shovel to the TE because it’s an easy transition from speed to shovel in our blocking scheme. If we run speed to the nub side (we’re 50/50 weak/strong), the TE is base blocking the DE anyway on a block that’s almost a moot point. If the BSDE stops your speed option, you have more issues than this or any blog can fix.
We run our typical speed option with the end man on the line being the read key, and we run a through block on him. We will combo a 1 or 0 tech (or 3 in eagle) and pull our BSOT regardless of an even or odd front (visuals below).
Keep in mind speed option is always the first read. If the pitch isn’t there or the DE attacks the QB too quickly, the QB will flick the shovel inside to the Y, right at the play-side A-gap. A nice hole should be created between the DE attacking pitch or QB, and the combo on the DT on the play-side.