Pin and Pull, Lead G and Outside/Wide Zone
Many teams that want to attack the edge do so with a "Wide Zone" or outside zone type scheme to get the edge on the defense.
But many teams find it a bit difficult to truly get the edge with a straight zone scheme. A nice adjustment is to pin and pull, which retains traditional zone blocking on the backside, but pins the defense down on the front side and pulls around to seal the defense inside. But where this is difficult is with the defender assigned with setting the edge. These players often need to be reached by a TE or lead back in order to allow the play to get outside. If this doesn't get accomplished, it can be difficult for the pullers in a pin and pull scheme to get around and upfield, and a play can be blown up.
Lead G will look similar to pin and pull, with down blocks up front, and the G pulling around the formation and up into the second level. It's effectively pin and pull with only the FSG pulling.
Here's an example of just that. Michigan's TE has to deal with a DE/OLB aligned outside of him. When he can't get his head to the outside of the play, he has to give up on his reach block and try to wash him down. However, that matchup will typically favor the defender, and the TE can't widen the hole or control him inside. That forces the pulling OL up inside the TE, however, the run lane is not widened by the TE, and the defense can collapse this hole, which forces the RB to bounce into the second level LB the pulling OL is trying to lead into.
A way of adjusting for this is to make a "Down" call or run a "Down" play.
A down scheme can be run with either a tackle or a guard. Traditionally, however, it utilizes the play side guard (PSG) to down block the edge defender and wash him out of the play. "Down G", as it is known, gets an interior run blocker on an edge defender, which helps widen the run lane. The TE and the play side OT (PST) will then down block, helping to seal the defense inside. These down blocks similarly widen the gap for the RB to run through.
On the backside of the play, typically you will see the offense running it's stretch zone scheme. This acts to cut off the remaining defenders and seal them inside the box to give the RB a clear alley to run through.
However, like pin and pull, teams run it differently. Some will pin and pull back to the center, some to the back side guard (BSG), and some the whole line. So there is a variant that allows you to pin down with the center and pull around with the BSG. In this way, the play will look a lot like Power O, with the FSG acting as the kick block and the wrapping Guard pulling through the run lane. However, it is a bit different for the RB, as nominally it will be very difficult to read A-to-B-to-C gap. This play will almost always spring in the C-gap.
Michigan lines up in a shotgun with a flat back aligned to the far side of the field. In many cases, this is stretch or pin and pull into the boundary for the defense. Because of that tendency, WMU is going to send an additional player off the edge. But because it's "Down G", Michigan gets a 2-for-1 on its kick block.
The center and BSG have a miscommunication on this play. The NT is shaded weak, and the center expects the BSG to take over the block, but the BSG works to the 2nd level. Luckily for Michigan, the "Flipper" technique from the center is enough to slow the NT and the NT isn't able to redirect quickly enough for a TFL.
The next example is blocked up front a little better, but WMU isn't biting so hard on pin and pull this time. This time, instead, the third level defender is attacking from depth at the snap to make his run fit. But the OG can really kick out the defensive EMOL and the down blocks do well to seal the defense inside. Coming down full speed on a fill in a run hole this size can be a difficult task for a safety, and the RB can make him miss, and then is off to the races.
Using a Lead Blocker
This is also a good short yardage and goal line scheme, particularly with a lead blocker. As seen above, the best way to cut down this play is to get a third level player into the hole. But by sending a lead blocker from the FB into that hole, you can drive that guy out of the hole and spring a big one.
Examples with Pin and Pull on Backside
The Chiefs (+Eagles and others as well) use this blocking adjustment vs a 9tech on the frontside of G and outside zone. Allows for a huge seam for the back to hit frontside. Also pull BSG to time up w/LB. 🔊 up to hear the why. pic.twitter.com/7niye2i96i— Geoff Schwartz (@geoffschwartz) October 3, 2018
Examples with Lead Blocker
Here, the FB does well to lead up into the hole with force and physicality. When the safety goes to fill, the FB gets leverage and unloads on him, crushing him back into the CB (who you don't block because he's outside and is either cut off by the kickout or by this lead block).
A tighter look to see that lead block. Would like to see the RT do a little better on his pin down. Gets a good initial punch to drive back the DL, but loses balances the DL is able to roll back into the play. He doesn't make a tackle, but that's something to be cleaned up going forward. Backside does well to seal the backside of the play, and the TE does a great job working to the MIKE and getting a key block on the scraping LB.
As noted, some teams will also run "Down T" and kick with the OT instead of the PSG. Here's the Eagles running the "G scheme" but pulling the T. When the T doesn't find work, he wraps around. They also pin and pull to get the Center involved playside as well.
Y’all... my heart is warm and fuzzy after watching the @Eagles OL blocking this G play. @LaneJohnson65 with a slingshot and finish. 😍. Great work fellas pic.twitter.com/zl1rwp8bmd— Geoff Schwartz (@geoffschwartz) September 10, 2018
18 Stripes did a similar post on the subject