What Is Defensive Tackle In Football And Their Responsibilities
What is dt in football?
Defensive tackles are members of the defensive line who line up in the middle of the defense. On a football field, defensive tackles are frequently the biggest and strongest players.
There are often one or two defensive tackles on the field, depending on the defensive configuration. Three defensive linemen including the DT make up a three-four defense.
Four defensive linemen, including two DT, make up a four-three defense. DTs line up directly on the line of scrimmage because they are DL. This indicates that they frequently get the first opportunity to tackle the ball carrier.
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Along with the question “what is dt in football“, people also wonder about their duties. Now we’ll go through some of the main responsibilities that DTs perform on the defensive side of the ball below.
Filling Holes Along The Offensive Line
In football, one of the key goals of a defensive tackle is to prevent the other team from creating openings for the running back.
The offense will have a certain hole they want to run the ball through on rushing plays. This might occur, for instance, between the left offensive tackle and the left guard.
It is the duty of the defensive lineman to locate these openings and close them off to prevent the ball carrier from passing through. The rushing back will frequently become caught in the backfield if the hole is closed, giving other defenders time to advance and make the tackle.
Speeding Up The Passer
Rushing the passer is another task assigned to defensive tackle in football. Due to their stature and where they line up, this position is less prominent in pass-rushing than defensive ends.
Since d tackle football is positioned in the middle of the line, they must overcome guards and centers to get to the quarterback. This frequently results in defensive ends going up against a single offensive tackle and defensive tackles facing double teams.
Due to their girth, DTs could also find it more challenging to pass rush. On running plays, they must maintain their weight to avoid being knocked around, but this added bulk can make it challenging for these guys to pursue quarterbacks.
Approaching the running back
DTs will try to enter the backfield and tackle running backs before they exit the backfield in addition to closing holes.
Running backs nearly always have to alter their course if a defensive tackle manages to get past his block and into the pocket.
This can result in the DT personally making a tackle for loss or simply allowing the other defenders to tackle the ball carrier as the play has been stopped.
How to play defensive tackle?
Train your footwork
If a defensive tackle wants to be quick, his feet are crucial. Defensive tackles don’t need to train on sprinting and become fast in a straight line like some other players at different positions do.
However, they must make sure that they can react quickly to the ball. Working on footwork drills is the greatest method to do this. This applies to backtracking, shuffling, and other ladder drills. These drills will be included in practice by defensive coaches.
Work on hand strength
To maintain that space between them that we were talking about earlier, defensive tackles need to be able to swat away the hands and arms of blockers. This resembles martial arts in certain ways.
To swat the blocker’s hands away, they will need to utilize their hands. This is such a crucial ability to develop. Despite a defensive tackle’s size, strength, and speed, if a blocker can get his hands on the tackle’s body, he will be able to obtain the leverage needed to shove the tackler out of the way.
Defensive tackles frequently attack and move through the line of scrimmage at unnatural angles. To obtain this leverage, they must attempt to maintain their three-point stance throughout the whole play by starting low to the ground.
Their bodies must be twisted and turned at various angles. And they have to perform all of this without getting hurt. Stretching is crucial for defensive tackles because of this.
The key to maintaining flexibility is working with a coach who can help them stretch as well as use elastic bands.
After learning about the responsibilities and how to play in this position, you must have answered the question “what is dt in football“. So next, let’s learn more about some famous players in this position in American football.
Famous defensive tackle players
“Mean Joe” Greene
Chuck Noll made Greene his first choice after taking over the inactive organization in 1969, and he immediately gave the team, which desperately needed it, credibility. He is one of the most popular d tackle players in football.
Although “Mean” was only a nickname he acquired from playing for the North Texas Mean Green; he certainly lived up to it by pounding defenders, occasionally even after the whistle has blown.
But he threw off the game plans of opposition offenses, particularly when he lined up in the tilt position over the center.
Deacon Jones was a great player to play with for Olsen, but his size, speed, and intelligence were equally helpful.
With the exception of his final season, Merlin was a Pro Bowler each year of his career. For more than ten years, he broke through backfields and punished ball carriers.
While it’s difficult to choose between two of the best players from any position in the 1960s, Olsen narrowly edges Bob Lilly on this list for one reason. During a significant portion of his career, Olsen competed in the Western Division and twice a year faced the dominant Packers and Colts.
Lilly’s outstanding agility and balance allowed him to be just as disruptive in the rushing game as he was in the passing game.
Most significantly, he gave his greatest performances in the big games. Almost no Baltimore Colts player could block him in Super Bowl V. He undoubtedly set a high bar for Randy White, his successor.
In short, in football positions, defensive tackles require a combination of size, strength, agility, and flexibility. Through this article, you definitely get the answer for what is dt in football. If you are keen on this kind of football, please join our website American football terms to update more on other positions.