What Is a Slot Receiver?


A slot is a narrow notch, groove, or opening that’s used in machines and containers. It also refers to an authorization that allows a planned aircraft operation. It’s similar to the authorizations you get for taking off or landing at a certain airport, but it’s a little more specific than that.

A Slot Receiver

The slot receiver position is a relatively new addition to the NFL. It grew out of Al Davis’s coaching philosophy that relied on attacking the three levels of defense in spread offenses. He used this technique in 1963 when he coached the Oakland Raiders, a team that featured two wide receivers who lined up on the weak side of the defense.

Today, slot receivers are a staple in many NFL teams. They’re a difficult target to defend and a versatile part of an offensive playbook.

They’re also important blockers for running backs and wide receivers, and they can pick up blitzes from linebackers and secondary players. They’re able to run quick routes and get open on the sidelines, making them crucial to an effective offense.

When it comes to defending slot receivers, the biggest issue is their speed. They have to be able to run fast in order to make defenders miss on running plays and catch the ball quickly enough on passing routes. They’re also prone to getting hit by defenders on pitch plays and reverses, so they need to be able to deal with contact without breaking stride.

In terms of size, slot receivers tend to be smaller and stockier than wideouts in general. They’re typically around 5-10 feet tall and 170-190 pounds, though some are shorter and lighter.

They are usually called into pre-snap motion by the quarterback, so they have to be able to move quickly after the ball is snapped. They can also carry the ball on certain plays, such as pitches and reverses.

The best slot receivers are versatile, catching the ball in the flat and on the run from different angles. They’re not as fast as a running back, but they have the speed to move quickly and can still make big plays in the open field.

These receivers often use their speed to break up passes, too. They can be dangerous on slant and sweep routes, where they can make a defender miss or catch the ball with their feet up.

Some of the best slot receivers in the game are Tyreek Hill, Cole Beasley, and Keenan Allen. These receivers have had some of the most productive seasons in the league because they’re able to make their mark as slot wideouts, which is becoming an increasingly popular position in football.

They’re also very tough, so they’re able to absorb contact on the ground and in the air. They’re great hitters, too, and they can catch the ball on almost any route.

If you’re interested in learning more about slot receivers, you can read up on their skill set and their career statistics. You can even watch them in action on video.