Edge Rusher
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Edge Rusher
Defensive ends ("DE") in a 4-3 defense
Outside linebackers ("OLB") in a 3-4 defense

The term edge rusher (alternately edge defender or simply edge) is a piece of nomenclature designating a position in gridiron football. Some analysts consider "edge rusher" to be its own position entirely.[1]

Discussion

Players considered to be edge rushers are usually 4-3 defensive ends or 3-4 outside linebackers. Note that 3-4 outside linebackers often act as an extension of the defensive line, in that they will attack the offensive tackles or blocking tight ends on the majority of their snaps under a majority of 3-4 schemes, though it is not uncommon to see them drop back and play a more traditional 4-3 linebacker role as well.[2]

One reason the word "edge" is used in the term "edge rusher" is that edge often refers to the area outside of offensive tackles, but within a couple of yards of the line of scrimmage. While other positions will rarely be referred to as edge rushers, other than 4-3 defensive ends and 3-4 outside linebackers, it is common for defensive backs, traditional linebackers, and even defensive tackles to occasionally play the position on a play-to-play basis.[3]

Notable players

Notable edge rushers of the National Football League (NFL) include:[4]

Each player's traditional position is noted in parentheses (DE for defensive end, OLB for outside linebacker).

References

  1. ^ Holler, John (April 11, 2017). "NFL vocabulary is changing". 247sports.com.
  2. ^ Schalter, Ty (August 8, 2012). "4-3 vs. 3-4: Showcasing the Biggest Differences in the NFL Pass Rushes". bleacherreport.com.
  3. ^ "ITP Glossary: Set The Edge". insidethepylon.com. January 12, 2016.
  4. ^ Wilson, Ryan (July 7, 2020). "Ranking top 10 EDGE rushers, defensive linemen in NFL: TJ Watt, Aaron Donald lead the way". CBS Sports. Retrieved 2020.

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