How to Play Wide Receiver

PJ Blanchfield is an attorney based in Albany, New York, where he serves as the county’s assistant public defender. PJ Blanchfield played wide receiver for the Hamilton College football team and is a member of the Christian Brothers Academy athletic hall of fame.

In American football, the wide receiver is an offensive position that lines up, in general, on the far edges of the offensive formation. Typical formations call for two receivers on either side of the formation, for a total of four, but any combination of receivers on either side is acceptable, including two receivers on one side and zero on the other.

Wide receivers have one of three responsibilities to carry out on any given play. Their primary offensive role calls for them to run a passing route, catch a pass from the quarterback, and pick up as much yardage as possible. Receivers can also be used as decoys, however, which requires them to run hard down the field and draw coverage away from the quarterback’s true target. Finally, during certain running plays, receivers who are not running a decoy route may be needed to set blocks for a running play. The position can be played by individuals of varying body types, though a certain degree of height is essential at the professional level in order to have an advantage over defenders.