Sporting Charts

Split T

What does Split T Mean?

A formation in football that features a slightly wider offensive line and three backs lined up right next to each other behind the quarterback. This formation is used to open holes for the various running backs by spreading out the offensive line, forcing the defensive line to widen out and creating potential holes for the backs. The quarterback should have a variety of options, given the three running backs behind him and the wider offensive line. The quarterback may choose to run the ball, hand the ball off, or pitch the ball wide in order to mix up the defense.

The split T is not considered a passing formation. 


Sporting Charts explains Split T

The split T was considered the original option formation in football. The idea was to give an athletic quarterback many different options by forcing the defense to react to four different potential runners. The split T was different than the standard T because the offensive line was wider than usual. This had the advantage of potentially creating gaps for the runners to go through, but it had the disadvantage that the defense could exploit those gaps if they read the play correctly.

The split T is rarely seen in modern-day football, mostly due to its deficiencies in the passing game.

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