A deceptive football play in which the offense allows a defensive player through a hole in the line, only to block the player behind the line of scrimmage.
The traditional “mousetrap” is used to draw defenders away from a pre-determined point of attack, luring a defensive linemen or linebacker through a hole in the offensive line. When the ball is snapped, a guard or tackle adjacent to this hole shifts behind the line of scrimmage to meet the onrushing defender, while a running back takes the ball through the space the linemen just vacated.
A mousetrap is often used widely throughout football to refer to a play, such as a fake punt, reverse, or other trickery that takes the defense by surprise at an unexpected point in the game.
Also referred to as a “trap block.”