You may hear the term i-Formation when you watch football. What in the heck is an I formation? Well, it is called that because it looks a bit like the letter I behind where the quarterback stands.
Notice the full-back (FB) and the half-back (HB) in the ‘backfield’ behind the quarterback. When you see all three of them together, doesn’t it look at least a little bit like the letter “i”?
When is the i-formation used?
This is primarily used in a situation when the offense wants to run the football. Obviously, it is not always a run play when the offense sets up in this formation because the defense would figure that out pretty quickly. However, the general gist is the following:
- The quarterback (QB) calls the play when they are in the huddle.
- The center (C) hikes the ball to the QB.
- The offensive linemen block in a specific direction/pattern to help create what they hope will be openings in the defense (discussed more in offensive strategies)
- The fullback (FB) blocks in front of the halfback (HB) who will receive the ball from the quarterback (QB).
- The halfback has the ball and runs hopefully into the perfect hole created by his offensive line and widened by his fullback. Then he is on his own to run like a bat out of Hades for as far as his generally short, stocky legs will take him!
The quarterback can throw in this situation too. That is why the WR at the top, is slightly off the line. That makes the TE an eligible receiver who can also catch the ball.