For our Madden NFL 17 Defensive Tips today we are going to go over a play out of Dime 1–4–6 called Cover 6 Press. Dime 1–4–6 allows the strong safety to come down as another underneath defender while his backup comes on the field at the normal strong safety spot. So if you have a run stopper at safety you’ll be able to put him in position to get a lot more big hits playing basically as a linebacker now.
Cover 6 is a Cover 2 and Cover 4 hybrid, it has each coverages strengths and weaknesses. The Cover 2 side has the cornerback playing a Cloud Flat assignment, which means he’ll protect the deep outside first, then rally down on anything thrown in front of him. So you want to utilize this and make sure the Cover 2 portion of the defense is on the side of the formation where immediate flood routes are possible, like bunch sets or any formation with 2 receivers and a running back on that side.
Formations where there are 3 receivers on 1 side spread out, like Trips, Trio and Empty sets where stuff like 4 verts are possible you want to align the Cover 4 portion of the defense to that side, so you’re not outnumbered deep.
As to who to user control, vs the sets that have 3 receivers on 1 side, we like to control the linebacker on that side and take away any quick developing routes like curls drags and slants by the innermost receiver, but be prepared on the slants and drags to jump back into your spot if a receiver is about to run into the area you just left. But if that guy goes deep don’t chase him, because the other linebacker will pick him up in man coverage for you. So you’re free to cover the next man that comes into your zone or the next receiver closest to you.
Now you can play around with how close or far back you want either corner to play, playing the flat cornerback off might bait a throw short and if you have slow cornerback and you must start him In a perfect world he’ll always be the corner with the cloud flat responsibility so he’s not out there chasing DeSean Jackson deep, but if he ends up having the deep blue assignment we advise backing him off the receiver, so you’re not toast before the play even started.
Finally, if your opponent breaks out an unexpected run on you, Cover 6 also doesn’t leave you out to dry due to how active the secondary is in run support. The Cover 2 cornerback will immediately take on the receiver across from him and if he isn’t weak as hell, he’ll be a road block for the running back if he kicks it outside and if we’re lucky, he’ll block shed the receiver and tackle the back for hopefully a loss of yards. In Cover 4 the safeties are known for being aggressive run supporters, so Cover 6 is also going to benefit from this. On runs up the middle and towards the Cover 4 safeties side he’ll come barreling down towards on the back in a hurry.
In the end, the beauty of Cover 6 Press is in its ability to cover different route concepts on the same play with its split coverages, and with the unique personnel grouping of Dime 1–4–6, it brings speed while still maintaining a hard hitting aspect.
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