Proper Man-Press alignment and stance.2
- Alignment: The defender aligns himself slightly inside the receivers he’s assigned to cover and approximately a yard and a half off, or down field, of the receiver.3 I teach defenders to put their nose on the receiver's inside eye to help establish the correct inside shade alignment.
- Stance: The defender stands across from the receiver with his feet armpit width apart, his weight evenly distributed on the inside balls of both feet, his knees are slightly bent to the point that his knees are directly over his toes, he bends at the waist on a 45 degree angle to the point that his shoulders are over his knees, his back is flat, his elbows are bent slightly, his hands are relaxed and head is up facing the receiver. When properly executed this stance results in the defenders nose over his toes.2
- Key: The key for any defender playing man coverage his assigned man. Prior to the snap, the defender locks his eyes onto the inside hip of the receiver. That hip becomes the defenders pre-snap key, i.e. what he is looking at just before and after the snap to help him determine what technique he will employ to accomplish his assignment.
- Start: Now that the defender is properly aligned and in the proper stance with his eyes on his key he is ready for the ball to be snapped and for the receiver to release from the line of scrimmage. The defenders starts by taking a four inch hop-step backwards moving his feet outward to shoulder width, leaving the rest of the defender's body staying generally in the stance position.