Any offensive scheme in football that is commonly used at the professional level or high-level college football. Teams that use a pro-style offense usually feature a balance between the pass and run and can be successful at either.
Pro-style offenses are generally more complex and require more skill, experience and discipline than many of the offensive schemes used at the collegiate or high school level. Pro-style offenses favor balanced strategies that force the defense to defend both the run and the pass. Formations and schemes are complex, can change from play to play and demand intelligent decision-making from all players involved. Pro-style offenses are characterized by strong run and pass-blocking, are often very formulaic and rely on intelligent play by the quarterback.
Most pro-style offenses use tight ends and fullbacks to a greater extent than in college football, often because of the availability of more athletic, stronger players. The I-formation and Shotgun are more prevalent in pro-style offenses and are used because they can be made more effective at the professional level. Most pro-style offenses make good use of zone blocking and power run schemes in order to open up the field for play-action. Some good examples of pro-style offenses include the West Coast, Air Coryell, and Erhardt-Perkins offensive systems.
Some college teams, especially those coached by former NFL coaches, employ a pro-style offense and players trained under those systems can often prove to be better prepared for the game once they reach the NFL.