The area between two offensive linemen through which the ball carrier is supposed to carry the ball is called a hole. For the purpose of strategy, offensive coaches assign different numbers to the holes.
Offensive play calls often use numbers in the name so that the players know where the play is designed to go. In most offensive schemes the holes to the left of the center are given odd numbers, and holes to the right are given even numbers. The numbers generally range from -8. For instance, the hole between the centre and guard is either the 1 or 2 hole. The hole between the guard and tackle is either the 3 or 4 hole. The number between the tackle and tight end is the 5 or 6 hole, and the hole between the tight end and sideline is the 7 or 8 hole.