A 7 technique in football refers to a defensive lineman position that lines up on the tight ends inside shoulder. A seven technique defensive end is usually used in a 4-3 defensive formation.
When lining up the seven tech is going to be between the tight end and the offensive tackle. The tight ends inside shoulder should line up with the seven techniques helmet when they get into their stances.
The name seven technique comes from where the player is lined up on the defensive line. A player lined up between the guard and the tackle for example is referred to as a three technique.
While a player lined up directly in front of the center is a zero technique.
The further a defensive lineman lines up from the middle of the formation the higher number he will be assigned. A nine technique being the highest number, this is assigned to a defensive lineman that lines up outside the tight end.
What To Know About 7 Techniques In Football
Now that you know what a 7 technique is in football it’s time to learn what this position does on the football field. Below we will break down several key responsibilities of the seven tech defensive lineman.
Containing The Run
One of the main responsibilities of a seven technique defensive end is containing the run. Since these players are lined up so wide on the formation they are tasked with the job of keeping the running back inside the tackle box.
If the ball carrier is able to get outside a seven tech defensive lineman then there will be no more defensive lineman to stop him from reaching the sideline.
This is why on runs a seven tech will often get upfield to contain the run and then simply hold their ground. In most cases, this means the lineman will be more concerned with keeping the running back inside rather than getting the tackle.
Rushing The Passer
Another key job of a seven technique lineman is to rush the quarterback. On passing plays this player is going to be responsible for putting pressure on the quarterback.
Since a seven technique is lined up so wide in the formation these players are able to get outside leverage.
This leverage will allow them to get into the offensive backfield quickly and potentially work their way around the tackle.
This is one of the reasons seven technique defensive linemen often have good sack numbers.
Chipping The Tight End
These defensive linemen are also responsible for chipping the tight end on passing plays. When a receiver or tight end starts to run a route defenders will often make contact with them right as the play starts.
Contact with receivers is legal so long as it takes place within one yard from the line of scrimmage.
Since a seven technique is going to be lined up in front of the tight end they will be able to get a hit on him as he starts his route.
This will slow the tight end down and potentially throw off the timing with the quarterback. This is done more frequently if the opposing team’s tight end is a threat in the passing game.
Fighting Through Double Teams
Another run game responsibility of seven tech defensive ends is fighting through double teams.
since this position linens up between the tackle and the tight end it is not uncommon for this player to be doubled teamed on run plays.
A double team means both the tackle and the tight end will block the seven technique on the play.
This will usually happen when the ball is run towards the side of the formation that the seven technique lineman is lined up on.
On these plays the defensive end will have to fight through both blocks in order to make the tackle.