Saturday, October 18, 2008

Pass the A-11

I first heard about the A-11 offense a couple of weeks ago, in a very short, very cryptic report on the local news about about Piedmont High School's football team. I didn't really follow up on it, though. The New York Times did for me.

Steve Humphries, the assistant, had an idea: What if the offense featured not one quarterback but two? Not bad, Bryan said, but things would really get interesting if all 11 players were potentially eligible to receive a pass.[...]

Piedmont’s basic A-11 formation calls for a center flanked by two guards, who are essentially tight ends. Two quarterbacks, or a quarterback and a running back, line up behind the center, with three receivers split to each side. [...]

Prior to each Piedmont play, only the center initially goes to the line of scrimmage. The two “guards” and the split receivers each stand one and a half yards off the line. Then, just before the ball is snapped, Piedmont shifts into formation for the signaled play. With this simple movement, the possibilities for eligible receivers become dizzying.

Intriguing, no? If only my high school's team had been this interesting.

Here's Piedmont in action: (note: you'll probably want to watch w/ the sound muted or low)