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Film Room: Defense 2020 Part Seven—Cover 0 Blitzes

Ryan Walters is back, and he’s bringing his Cover 0 blitzes with him.

NCAA Football: Missouri at Vanderbilt Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

In previous Film Room segments we looked at Tiger defensive coordinator Ryan Walters’ Cover 1 five- and six-man blitzes. Today we analyze his Cover 0 max blitzes.

Cover 0 Blitz

Here is an example of a Cover 0 six-man blitz. The five potential receivers are accounted for with five pass defenders. There are no free players to help the man defenders.

Cover 0 can also support seven rushers. In that case, a blitzer would have peel off on a releasing back.

Let’s get to some specific examples.

Max Blitz Cover 0

This is a seven-man max blitz, very straight-forward, with no crossing or looping by the rushers.

With no one responsible for the back, a rusher would have had to peel to cover him on a release.

Will LB peels to cover RB on a Swing route

No such adjustment is necessesary, however. This is a run play which is quickly engulfed by a swarming Tiger front.

Safeties in B Gaps Cover 0

It’s a doozy of a blitz, but, alas, since-departed cornerback Christian Holmes (#21) gets beat for a touchdown.

An excellent wide view.

Safeties in B Gaps + CB Blitz Cover 0

The tight shot.

LBs in B Gaps Cover 0 Nose Low

This is an interesting one—a six-man rush supported by Cover 0.

Notice that nose tackle Kobie Whiteside (#78) drops out at the snap to play the low zone.

Had the slot receiver run a Slant rather than a Quick Out, perhaps Big Kobie intercepts and makes a return.

I love when the big guys get to carry the ball.

C’mon! Find the end zone, big fella!


This concludes our seven-part series on Ryan Walters’ 2019 Tiger defense. With the carryover of much of the defensive staff, I would think we’ll see much of the same in 2020, if and when that happens.

Next month we will run a three-part Film Room series in which we analyze a single defensive series from the Missouri’s 2019 game against South Carolina. This should be a fruitful exercise, as we’ll see in action many of the strategies we’ve introduced in this series.