A term in football refering to a type of pass route where during this type of pass the receiver runs parallel to the line of scrimmage then takes off up the field. The receiver that performs a wheel route is generally the running back however, this route can be run by an inside receiver.
The wheel route is a great fake pass route. When this route is run by a running back he will run toward the sideline and look back toward the quarterback as if preparing to catch the ball. At the sideline the running back will turn upfield and run down the field. The opposing team will expect the ball to be passed behind the line of scrimmage and will fall for the fake only to have the running back turn upfield. When this route is run by the receiver the player will run an out pattern then in a curved pattern turn and run upfield. The opposing team will assume that the ball is going to be passed to the receiver from the quarterback and will try and intercept the pass. Once the running back turns upfield the defense does not have much time to recover.