Football Veer

About the Veer

In football, a veer is a type of offense and running play frequently used at the lower levels of the sport. The veer is most frequently used in high school football, but can also be effective at youth and collegiate levels. It was developed in 1965 by University of Houston head coach Bill Yeoman.

The veer is considered a triple-option play because it involves the process of the offense reading defenders and reacting accordingly in 1 of 3 ways depending on what those defenders do.

There are a few variations of the veer play including the inverse veer, inside veer, and outside veer. The play can be run out of a variety of formations as well, but was created for a split backed (pro set) offense.


The veer can be used to many advantages in a football game. Whether the offense's goal is to take advantage of a weak defender, use clever blocking angles to help an undersized team, or simply just to confuse the defense, the veer can be useful. To properly utilize the veer, it is vital to have smart, focused players and a quarterback capable of reading defensive weaknesses.

The veer is a triple option offense which has 3 scenarios in which the play can occur, all of which are a result of the quarterback's read on the defense. In this play, one player will be taking a dive, one will be taking a pitch, and the other will be blocking.

How to Execute the Play

To start the play, the center will snap the ball to the quarterback who will be accompanied by two running backs. The quarterback receives the snap, opens up his stance so he is facing the sideline, and extends to ball outward toward that sideline. The fullback (dive back in this situation) will now run into the line to meet the quarterback. At this point the veer will begin to take its shape.

The offensive line will have left one defender uncovered and it is that players job to decide whether to tackle the quarterback or the dive back. The dive back will now run forward and extend his arms around the football as if he were to receive a handoff from the quarterback, but does not actually take the ball. It is now the quarterback's job to read the uncovered man being veered and decide whether to give the ball to the dive back and have him attack the gap, or take it upon himself to attack the gap. This is the first option in the veer.

If the quarterback keeps the ball, he is now presented with another option. The quarterback will now try to cut up the field along with the other running back (the pitch man in this situation). This running back will attempt to stay with the quarterback in the proper position to receive a pitch or lateral pass. The running back should only be a few yards away and this action should only take a few seconds. The second option is for the quarterback to pitch the ball to this running back.

Finally, the last option is for the quarterback to keep the ball and run it downfield in an attempt to gain yardage. The last player in the veer is typically a tight end with the job of blocking for the quarterback if he attempts to run.

If the quarterback's read on the defense earlier in the play led him to this point, then it is the last option.

As you can see, the veer is a very versatile play with many scenarios, but each one requires execution, focus, and proper reads from the entire team, and especially from the quarterback.